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Information about sea creatures - octopuses and squids

Octopuses and squids are the most highly developed of invertebrate animals (animals without backbones). They are sea animals of fearsome appearance. The octopus has eight tentacles surrounding a bulbous head containing eyes and a shaip beak. The squid has a cigar-shaped body with ten tentacles growing around its head, which also has eyes and jaws. Both animals have rows of suckers on their tentacles, which they can use to grip their prey. But neither octopuses nor squids are dangerous to human beings.

Octopuses and squids - information about sea creatures Octopus - information about sea creatures

Information about sea creatures: the suckers of an octopus (left) have thick rims and grow on low mounds of muscle. The cuttlefish and some squids have teeth around their suckers (center). A few squids have suckers containing retractable claws (right)

Information about sea creatures: the common octopus has an arm-span of about 2 feet. Some octopuses are only a few inches across, but the largest measure more than 30 feet

Octopuses and squids are molluscs, like the snail and oyster . But unlike most other molluscs, the octopus has no shell. In the squid, the shell is a horny structure situated inside the body. There are about 150 kinds of octopuses living in all the world's oceans. They vary in size from a few inches to more than 30 feet across. The common octopus, however, is only about two feet across. Squids too, are common in the world's seas. They range in size from an inch long up to about 50 feet long in the case of the giant squid, which is the world's largest invertebrate animal.

Octopuses live in nooks and crannies on the sea bed. They are hard to see because their color tends to merge with their surroundings. The octopus moves by pulling itself along with its suckers, or by forcing a jet of water out of an outlet called a siphon. The suckers of octopuses can exert a powerful grip. Squids also move by shooting out jets of water, and by using the two fins at the tail ends of their bodies. They use their tentacles and fins for steering.

This sea creatures feed on small marine animals, such as crabs and shellfish, but themselves fall prey to larger animals such as big fishes and whales. They often escape from attackers by shooting out clouds of dark liquid from an ink sac in their bodies.

Squids are an important source of food in many parts of the world. Octopus is also considered a delicacy in many countries, and both animals can be very tasty.

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