Coconut Octopus giving birth
Amphioctopus marginatus

 

This week we went to a dive site I had never been to before, in the south of Lembeh, on the mainland. It was very mucky but, as seems to be the case when going somewhere for the first time, very productive. Two Mimics, Ghost Pipefish, Pipehorses and then Ade (my wonderful trusty Dive Supervisor) came over to me and started making the sign for an octopus and then the ‘pregnant/eggs’ sign. ‘OK’, I thought, ‘I’ve seen octopus eggs before’ so I slowly made my way over.

I did not expect to see tiny little octopus squirting out from beneath the Coconut Octopus arms!! Wow!!! I couldn’t believe it and silently offered my thanks to the Lembeh Diving God…

It was an amazing sight to watch. Tiny little babies were rising up in little swarms at times, escaping through her arms and she also was firing them out of her funnel (the tube that octopus can jet themselves through the water with, or squirt their ink). The eggs ribbons seem to contain eggs at different stages of development, from not really ready to ‘here I come!’. She also would check the eggs with the suckers on her arms, individually, as if looking for the ones that were ready to hatch.

It was another bit of behaviour that I felt privileged to watch, another amazing moment from Lembeh, and another dive I will never forget.

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