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Prey Hunt: Octopuses precisely coordinate their eight arms

Prey Hunt: Octopuses precisely coordinate their eight arms

Sciences Precise hunting

How do octopuses coordinate their eight arms?

California two-pointed octopus catching delicious shrimp in the experiment

California two-pointed octopus catching delicious shrimp in the experiment

Source: Wardill Lab, University of Minnesota

With their eight arms, octopuses are not only able to move forward elegantly, but they are also very adept at grasping and manipulating objects around them. Outwardly, one arm looks like the other – but it is clear that they are used very purposefully.

BWhen hunting, octopuses adjust the use of their eight arms to match their prey. Crabs, which are slow to escape, usually confuse animals with the simultaneous use of several arms – sometimes jumping on prey like a cat on a mouse.

On the other hand, they use their arms more selectively one by one when hunting fast escape shrimp, such as a team of American researchers In the journal “Current Biology” mentioned. The second arm on the right and left side of the body, when viewed from the front, has a dominant function.

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If you get one Octopus Trevor Wardle, who led the study, explains that if you only look at them briefly, the movements usually don’t seem reproducible. “They manipulate and look weird when they move.” To more accurately analyze the motion sequence, the researchers photographed California two-pointed octopuses (Octopus bimaculoides) in an aquarium.

defy The white leg shrimp Or crab musicians and I watched them octopuses It overcame the prey from its lair. Scientists were able to distinguish three approach strategies used by the octopuses: animals that approached an ambush, pursued prey or sneaked up with caution.

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Shrimp were defeated by an ambush

As the analysis showed, shrimp were more likely to be attacked from an ambush or after an intrusion, crab often followed. Next, the researchers analyzed the actual attack and how the four pairs of arms are used in the process—the researchers numbered the arms from one to four on the right and left side of the body.

Slower cancers were often overcome by the simultaneous use of two to six arms. The second arm dominated in each case. The faster shrimp were attacked cautiously and more specifically – often with the second arm first. As soon as this contacted the prey, the octopuses secured their catch with two arms next to each other.

More about biology and zoology

Scientists continue to report that the arms on the left and right side of the body are basically equal. The use often depends on the field of view: if predators are perceived with the left eye, then the arms are used on the left side of the body in the attack.

The analysis further showed that octopuses used only a small portion of all theoretically possible arm combinations when hunting. So it looks like she’s using her arms very purposefully. The brains of octopuses and other octopuses are amazingly powerful. They dealt with so-called maze problems in experiments more efficiently than most mammals.

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