‘Blue-Ringed Octopus’: This Deadly Ocean Creature Changes Color To Blue When It’s Threatened

Beware of this marine creature when it changes its spots dramatically into blue color.

This ocean creature turns blue when threatened.
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Beware of this marine creature when it changes its spots dramatically into blue color.

Sightings of one of the deadly ocean creatures known as the blue-ringed octopus have been on the rise, particularly at Australian beaches. When this octopus seems agitated or angry, its blue spot will become visible all over its entire body.

Recently, the colored blue-ringed octopus was captured on film off the coast of Kiama, New South Wales, in Australia. Likewise, a young snorkeler also spotted the marine creature at the Cottesloe beach. Luckily, she was not bitten by the deadly octopus. The tiny and squishy octopus also emerged at shallow waters of Somerton Beach, according to Yahoo 7 News.

This creature, although it is deadly, is just like other animals. It will only attack and will appear bluish if its life is threatened. So, as long as you won’t hurt him. It will not harm you. However, with one bite, it can kill you.

According to National Geographic, blue-ringed octopus, also referred to as Hapalochlaena, is considered one of the ocean’s most venomous creatures. This is because of its saliva that contains tetrodotoxin, which is a potent neurotoxin, and could trigger respiratory failure.

There are about 10 species of this creature found from Japan to Australia. The smaller species often emerge in the shallow waters, in which humans spot them and are able to interact with them. However, reports showed that there were at least three deaths in Australia caused by the blue-ringed octopus.

Jenny Hofmeister, an oceanographer, said that like most animals, this octopus would only attack a human if they feel like their lives are in danger. She further noted that it is always out of self-defense rather than aggression.

Hofmeister also warns that most bites of this creature come from people collecting what they think is an empty shell. Then, they put it in their pocket and the octopus hiding in the shell comes out. She did not recommend shell collecting in areas where blue-ring octopuses inhabit.

Blue-ringed octopuses measure just about 12 to 20 centimeters, or five to eight inches. They are found mostly in tide pools and coral reefs in the Pacific Ocean and the Indian Ocean. They eat crabs, shrimp, hermit crabs, and other crustaceans. They are docile, but beware, once provoked, they could pack a deadly bite.