cool cephalopods

Ages ago I saw an item on TV about cuttlefish – one of the neat things I took away from it was how cuttlefish and other cephalopods (octopus & squid) use colour to communicate, and how precise their control of skin coloration is. And I would tell my students about it, but I didn't have the pictures! Well, take a look at this

You need to watch a clip about phosphorescence in deep-sea organisms, which is itself quite fascinating, but then the speaker jumps to talking about cephalopods. And there they are – squid whose control of skin colour is so precise that a male can show a white, aggressive side to another male – while at the same time showing quite a different colour pattern on the other side of his body to the female that he's courting! And cuttlefish & octopuses that blend into their surroundings, not only mimicking the colours of the coral or algae that they're hiding amongst, but also time their movements to match the moving patterns of light & dark that waves cast on a sandy seabed.

It's enough to give you quite a different perspective on squid rings…

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