Showing posts with label Cephalopods. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Cephalopods. Show all posts

Wednesday, January 9, 2019


We just learned about the Octopus - Three Hearts.

Another part of a cephalopod's body is the Radula.

We know that the octopus has a beak and that it uses the beak to bite it's food.
After the food gets into its mouth, there are tiny little teeth called the radula that help grind up the food.
It's almost like the octopus has a tongue with spikes on it that it rubs against the food to break it up into tiny pieces.

(from: wikipedia - radula)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Frog Teeth

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Octopus - Three Hearts

We just learned about the Statocyst.

Another interesting thing about cephalopod bodies is the Octopus - Three Hearts.

An octopus has all th ree of it's hearts up in the head part of the body.

One of the hearts is called the systemic heart, and it pumps the blood all over their body, all the way to each arm and back.

The other two hearts are called branchial hearts, and they bring the deoxygenated blood back to the gills for more oxygen.

The blood in an octopus is thicker than a human, so it is harder for the octopus to pump through their body.
When they are swimming they do not use their systemic heart, so they get tired quickly and usually stop for a rest.

(from: wikipedia - octopus)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Frog Skin

Wednesday, December 26, 2018


We just learned about the Cephalopod Skin.

Another part of a squid's body is the Statocyst.

This is a sac inside the squid's head that has small hairs and a hard ball inside it.
When the squid swims around, the ball rolls around inside and moves the hairs, and the squid can tell which way it is swimming.

It also can use this statocyst to hear low sounds, when the sound is loud and the hairs are vibrating the sac.

(from: wikipedia - statocyst)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Tadpoles

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Cephalopod - Skin

We just learned about the Cephalopod - Cirrus.

Another interesting thing is the Cephalopod Skin.

Cephalods like the octopus or cuttlefish can change their skin color, or if their skin is bumpy or smooth.
A fancy word for this is polyphenism.

Their skin is made up of an outside layer that has gooey mucous and sensors to tell when it is being touched.

Underneath that top layer is a layer made of collagen, which is like a fatty cell that holds skin together.
There are also cells in that layer for changing the color of the skin.

Most of an octopuses body is made up of soft tissue like collagen, and their squishy body makes it so they can get through really small holes.
They don't have any hard parts of their body except the beak, so even a big octopus can squeeze through a 1 inch hole!

(from: wikipedia - cuttlefish)

Watch The Octopus Squeezing Through Very Tiny Spaces - Animals R Us

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Frogspawn

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Cephalopod - Cirrus

We just learned about the Cephalopod Eyes.

Another part of the Cephalopod is the Cirrus.

A cirrus is a type of harder tentacle that doesn't bend as well, and doesn't have any suckers or hooks.
More than one cirrus is called cirri.

The nautilus has cirri that it uses to grab it's prey.
Each cirrus has ridges on it, so they use that to try and hold on really strong.
They hold on so strong with their cirri, that if the prey does get away they have probably ripped the cirri right off!

(from: wikipedia - nautilus)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Masked Tree Frog

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Cephalopod Eyes

We just learned about the Cephalopod - Suckers.

Another different part of a cephalopid is the Cephalopod Eyes.

Different cephalopods have different shaped eyes.
Like some octopus have dumbbell shaped eyes, some squids have oval shaped eyes, cuttlefish have W shaped eyes, and nautilus have pinhole shaped eyes.

The one thing cephalopods have the same is that they can all see very well in the dark, but they can't see different colors very well.
Their eyes are built a lot like human eyes, but where our eyes block a lot of light, theirs let in as much as possible so that they can see in the very dark depths of the ocean.

(from: wikipedia - cephalopod eye)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Yellow Spotted Climbing Toad

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Cephalopod - Suckers

We just learned about the Cephalopod Tentacle Hooks.

Another part of cephalopods is the Suckers.

Octopuses, squids and cuttlefish have suckers along the inside of their arms, and squids and cuttlefish have suckers at the end of their tentacles.

The outside of the suckers are usually shaped like a circular bowl.
The cephalopods have muscles below their suckers, that they use to make the suckers grab their prey.

(from: wikipedia - cephalopod limb)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Square Marked Toad

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Cephalopod - Tentacle Hooks

We just learned about the Cephalopod Arms and Tentacles.

At the end of many squid limbs are Tentacle Hooks.

Different squids have hooks of different shapes, but they use them to grab their prey, hold on to them and pull them to their mouth.

(from: wikipedia - cephalopod limb)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Japanese Tree Frog

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Cephalopod - Arms and Tentacles

We just learned about the Cuttlebone.

Another two parts of Cephalopod's body are the Arms and Tentacles.

It used to be that all of the legs of squids and octopuses were called tentacles, but a while back things changed and now they are seen as two different things: arms and tentacles.

The octopus only has 8 arms, because they are shorter and have suckers all along them.
Squids have 6 arms and 2 tentacles, and the tentacles are the ones with no suckers all along, but teeth or hooks on the end.

(from: wikipedia - cephalopod limb)

If Your Hands Could Smell, You’d Be an Octopus - Deep Look

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: African Dwarf Frog

Wednesday, November 7, 2018


We just learned about the Chromatophore.

Another part of some cephalopods is the Cuttlebone.

Just like you might think from the name, this is part of the cuttlefish.

It is a bone inside the cuttlefish that has a pocket for air.
The cuttlefish uses this to control when it floats or sinks.
It uses it's muscles to suck water out of the cuttlebone, which draws more air into it from its body, and it will float up.
Or it will push more water into the cuttlebone and it will sink.

(from: wikipedia - cuttlebone)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Stony Creek Frog

Wednesday, October 31, 2018


We just learned about the Cephalopod Ink.

Another part of many cephalopods is the Chromatophore.

Cephalopods have little sacks in their skin called cytoelastic sacculus, that are filled with something called pigment granules.

That's a lot of big words, but it basically means they have tiny bags of color all over their skin, and they use muscles to squish out more color or less color to change the way they look.

(from: wikipedia - Chromatophore)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Rhacophorus

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Cephalopod Ink

We just learned about the Cephalopod Funnel.

Another part of a cephalopod is the Ink Sac.

This is inside the mantle where the gills are, and when an octopus or squid gets scared it will let out some black ink to hide, and to try and scare off anyone coming to attack it.

The ink just comes out of the ink sac, and they use the funnel that they squirt water out of to shoot the ink all over the place.

The ink is so dark that sometimes people use it to color types of food very dark.

(from: wikipedia - arrĂ²s negre)

octopus shooting ink! - Bilal El Hasnaoui

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Wallace's Flying Frog

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Cephalopod - Funnel

We just learned about the Octopus Gills.

Another part of a cephalopod's body is the Funnel, also sometimes called a siphon.

When a cephalopod like a squid or octopus breathes in, they suck water into their mantle and then push it through their gills.

When they breathe out, they shoot the water out of a tube called a funnel.
They can even use that water shooting out like a little water jet and push their body along under water.

(from: wikipedia - octopus)

Octopus jet siphon system - clarkq

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Mission Golden Eyed Tree Frog

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Octopus Gills

We just learned about the Mantle of an Octopus or squid.

When the octopus or squid wants to breathe, they breathe through Gills just like fish.

The gills are inside the mantle, so they will take water into their mantle, and use some muscles to close their mantle.
This makes the water push through their gills where they can get the oxygen they need.

(from: wikipedia - octopus)

Amazing breathing of an Octopus - isarounddaworld

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Bornean Eared Frog

Wednesday, October 3, 2018


We just learned about the Octopus Beaks.

Another part of the Octopus is the Mantle.

This is the part of their body above their eyes and arms, that usually has fins on it.
The mantle usually has the heart and stomach and other organs inside of it.

(from: wikipedia - mantle (mollusc))

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: White's Tree Frog

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Octopus Beaks

We just learned about the Japanese Flying Squid.

We've learned about a lot of fun cephalopods, like the octopus, squid, nautilus and cuttlefish!.
Let's learn a little bit about how their bodies work!

An Octopus Body is made up of interesting parts like the mantle, fins, siphons, tentacles, gills, beaks, fins suckers and even things like humans have, like eyes, hearts, arms and skin.

One of the most interesting parts is the Octopus Beak, also called the rostrum, as it is one of the only hard parts of the body for many octopuses.

The beak is made up of two parts, with an upper and lower part that fit together like scissors, and are controlled by jaw muscles just like humans.

It is mostly made up of some proteins mixed in with something called chitin (pronounced like kah-ee-tin), which is actually a kind of sugar.

This chitin is hardened so the beak is super sharp and is used by an octopus to break open the shells of animals they want to eat like clams.

(from: wikipedia - cephalopod beak)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Lemur Tree Frog

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Japanese Flying Squid

We just learned about the Opalescent Inshore Squid.

Another Japanese Flying Squid.

These squids live in the Pacific around Japan and Vietnam, and can grow to around 2 feet long.

They swim along by sucking water in on one side of their siphon, and then spitting it out the other side like a jet.

Sometimes they will swim so fast that they will shoot themselves up out of the water, and have been seen flying for almost 100 feet over the water!

(from: wikipedia - japanese flying squid)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Hourglass Tree Frog

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Opalescent Inshore Squid

We just learned about the Big Blue Octopus.

Another type of cephalopod is the Opalescent Inshore Squid, also called Doryteuthis opalescens.

This is a very small squid, only growing to about 7 inches.

They live in the Pacific ocean by the eastern short of North America, all the way from Alaska to Mexico.

These squids are tiny but there are lots and lots of them.
The mother squids lay their eggs on the ocean floor, and there are so many that they cover acres and acres in the sand.
Because there are so many eggs there, a lot of ocean predators like starfish will go eat the eggs.

When the squids grow up, they are still very tiny but when they get together in groups there can be millions of them all in one place!
With so many of them swimming around, they are a big snack for other animals like sharks and seals.

(from: wikipedia - doryteuthis opalescens)

Opalescent Squid Egg Laying - nofishful

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Puerto Rican Crested Toad

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Big Blue Octopus

We just learned about the Pharaoh Cuttlefish.

Another type of cephalopod is the Big Blue Octopus also called the octopus cyanea or day octopus.

This octopus lives in the pacific, all the way from Hawaii to Africa.
It grows to about 3 feet long, and lives in coral reefs.

Like a lot of other cephalopods, this octopus can changes its color and whether it has bumpy or smooth skin.
It can even make stripes or dots on its body, or even make itself look bumpy like a rock.
One scientist studying a big blue octopus watched it change the way it looked 1,000 times in 7 hours!
Sometimes the octopus will even make moving and changing colors on its body, like a cloud is passing over head.

(from: wikipedia - octopus cyanea)

cyanea octopus camouflaging - noam josef

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Wyoming Toad

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Pharaoh Cuttlefish

We just learned about the Humboldt Squid.

Another type of cephalopod is the Pharaoh Cuttlefish.

Sometimes the boys of these cephalopods will fight each other over a girl they like, but they won't touch each other, they just flash different patterns of colors.

It's almost like boys having a dance battle to win the girl cephalopod's heart!

(from: wikipedia - pharaoh cuttlefish)

Pharaoh Cuttlefish - Henry Hall

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Vietnamese Mossy Frog