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 (1801 Posts)

Craig McClain is the Executive Director of the Lousiana University Marine Consortium. He has conducted deep-sea research for 20 years and published over 50 papers in the area. He has participated in and led dozens of oceanographic expeditions taken him to the Antarctic and the most remote regions of the Pacific and Atlantic. Craig’s research focuses on how energy drives the biology of marine invertebrates from individuals to ecosystems, specifically, seeking to uncover how organisms are adapted to different levels of carbon availability, i.e. food, and how this determines the kinds and number of species in different parts of the oceans. Additionally, Craig is obsessed with the size of things. Sometimes this translated into actually scientific research. Craig’s research has been featured on National Public Radio, Discovery Channel, Fox News, National Geographic and ABC News. In addition to his scientific research, Craig also advocates the need for scientists to connect with the public and is the founder and chief editor of the acclaimed Deep-Sea News (http://deepseanews.com/), a popular ocean-themed blog that has won numerous awards. His 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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