Octopus Sex at Hydrothermal Vents

Hydrothermal Vent OctopusIn the video below, deep-sea octopus expert Janet Voight with the Field Museum, discusses sex in octopods focusing on Vulcanoctopus hydrothermalis.  This ghostly looking octopus is only known from hydrothermal vents at 2600-2650m on the East Pacific Rise at 13 degrees north.  The ethereal appearance comes from a combination of the eyes being reduced and the body lacking pigment and chromatophores, resulting in a translucent skin.

i-4122638eebf951be81bd12e1ec8540ef-Vulcanoctopus garden

Vulcanoctopus feeds on the swarms of amphipods that occur near hydrothermal vents.

Join Janet as she takes us on an tour of of the anatomy and sex of Vulcanoctopus hydrothermalis.

Dr. M (1720 Posts)

Craig McClain is the Assistant Director of Science for the National Evolutionary Synthesis Center, created to facilitate research to address fundamental questions in evolutionary science. He has conducted deep-sea research for 11 years and published over 40 papers in the area. He has participated in dozens of expeditions taking him to the Antarctic and the most remote regions of the Pacific and Atlantic. Craig’s research focuses mainly on marine systems and particularly the biology of body size, biodiversity, and energy flow. He focuses often on deep-sea systems as a natural test of the consequences of energy limitation on biological systems. He is the author and chief editor of Deep-Sea News, a popular deep-sea themed blog, rated the number one ocean blog on the web and winner of numerous awards. Craig’s popular writing has been featured in Cosmos, Science Illustrated, American Scientist, Wired, Mental Floss, and the Open Lab: The Best Science Writing on the Web.

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