Check out this article in The Daily Mail about a new wound patch that can stick to both wet and dry surfaces, inspired by the suckers on an octopus tentacle.
According to The Seattle PI, this year's annual Valentine's Day blind date for two giant Pacific octopodes will not take place -- for the second year in a row. Usually it is a romantic event where visotors to the Seattle Aquarium look on while a male and a female octopus are paired up in the hopes that they will mate. Last year the event was cancelled out of fear that the very large and aggressive male might just eat the much smaller female instead of mating with her. This year the cancellation is for a much happier reason: Raspberry, the female selected for this year's event, was found to be already fertilized. So instead of being part of a sixteen-tentacled live sex show, she is going to be released into Puget Sound today at noon Pacific time. The release will be streamed live on the Seattle Aquarium's website if you want to watch.
A growing number of hospitals in Europe are giving knitted toy octopodes to prematurely-born infants, as a comforting tool with which to cuddle. From the linked article: "The idea began at Aarhus University Hospital in Denmark, where medical staff reported that the toy octopi calmed babies, led to improved breathing and cardiac patterns and, as a result, increased levels of oxygen in their blood. They also reported that when the babies cuddled their octopus they were less likely to try to pull on the cables and tubes surrounding their incubators." How cool is that?
UPDATE (via reader Treebyleaf): Here is the Octopus For A Preemie website, which includes an actual crochet pattern if you want to make your own to donate to a hospital.
Here's some friendly advice: Don't call 911 and ask how many legs an octopus has. John D. Barron of Rock Hill, South Carolina did that this week, and it got him arrested. Oops.
Reader Julie Zetterberg Sardo shared this story with me today from the Suffolk Gazette. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all of the brave Olympic atheletes who have clearly survived encounters with a terrible cephalapodic beast.
Check this out - recently NOAA's Okeanos Explorer was doing research in the Gulf of Mexico when they spotted this dumbo octopus doing something totally unique. As they watched, it curled up its tentacles tightly - a behavior that had never been observed before. This is really, really cool.
I've talked before about how insanely flexible octopodes are. Well, the staff at New Zealand's National Aquarium recently got an object lesson in that fact. Resident octopus Inky made a daring escape earlier this year, and by all indications made it all the way back out to the ocean. From the article: "Staff found octopus tracks, which showed he began his journey by slipping through a small gap in the top of his enclosure before travelling across a wet floor. He found a drain, about 150 millimetres in diameter, which led to the sea, and made a dash for freedom."
In a tragic turn of events, the iconic Ozzy the Octopus has been taken down in Madison, Wisconsin. Having been bought out last year, the chain of Octopus Car Wash in Wisconsin is now Mister Car Wash. What a sad day.