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Octopuses have "arms" and "legs"

August 19, 2008 | 12:45 pm

Octopuses' eight tentacles divide up into six "arms" and two "legs", a new study has found. Reuters reports on the study published by a chain of commercial aquariums:

Eye_can_see_you_tooHelped by over 2,000 observations by visitors, teams of aquatic specialists carried out a study showing that the creatures seemed to favor their first three pairs of tentacles for grabbing and using objects, Sea Life aquariums said.

"One can assume that the front six tentacles have the function of arms, and that the back two take over the function of legs," said Sea Life biologist Oliver Walenciak.

Unlike humans and some other animals, most octopuses did not appear to be left-handed or right-handed. Those that were suffered from eye problems on their less-favored side.

"People have always assumed that octopuses coordinate their ... gripping behavior through visual data. That seems to be true. When one eye is weak, another side of arms is favored," said Walenciak.

--Francisco Vara-Orta

Photo: Aquarium of the Pacific

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