Rare Octopus Seen During Deep Sea Expedition in North Pacific Ocean

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Deep sea explorers spotted a rare dumbo octopus in the North Pacific Ocean on September 13.

The scientists were part of an expedition funded by NOAA Ocean Exploration via the Ocean Exploration Cooperative Institute, using Exploration Vessel (E/V) Nautilus. They spotted the rare octopus while exploring the ocean floor at a depth of about 1,680 meters (about one mile) “on an unnamed seamount in Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument” in the northwestern Hawaiian Islands

According to the Ocean Exploration Trust (OET), dumbo octopuses are typically spotted in the deep waters of the Central Pacific. They propel themselves using “famous ear-shaped fins to find food, then gobble their prey up whole, feasting on a variety of deep sea critters such as copepods, isopods, bristle worms, and amphipods,” said the OET.

The trust said its expedition was focused on the “largely unexplored” northwestern section of the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument. Credit: Ocean Exploration Trust/NOAA via Storyful