Let’s take a closer look at some of the most interesting facts about the Dumbo Octopus, one of the many marine animals that float around in the deep sea.
Several species have been shuffled around different genera
What’s fascinating about several species in the genus Grimpoteuthis is that there are several of them which are only known by a couple of specimens. Only two specimens of the Grimpoteuthis abyssicola and only three specimens of the Grimpoteuthis greeni have ever been found. The Grimpoteuthis angularis is only known from a single specimen that was discovered off the coast of New Zealand in 2022.
Male and female octopuses in this genus look about the same
The size of these types of octopuses differs quite a bit among species. While there are species that only have a length of 5 centimeters, there are also much larger species that reach a length of up to 37 centimeters. While many types of octopuses feature noticeable sexual dimorphism, this is not the case with dumbo octopuses. Male and females are generally similar in size. The only noticeable difference between males and females has been found in both the Grimpoteuthis bathynectes and the Grimpoteuthis discovery in which males have larger suckers on the tentacles.
It’s a genus in the group of umbrella octopuses
Grimpoteuthis is the scientific name of a genus of octopuses commonly referred to as the Dumbo Octopus. This genus is part of the umbrella octopuses of the Opisthoteuthidae. These deepsea creatures are so-called pelagic octopuses, meaning they live at extreme depths in the vast open oceans of the world. Umbrella octopuses are named as such because they feature a web of skin between their tentacles which allows them to cover themselves as if it was an umbrella.
Their fins are what makes them resemble the Disney character
The most distinctive features of this type of octopus are the fins that extend from an area just above their eyes. They can use these to slowly swim in the depths of the ocean. As you can see, this feature strikingly resembles the ears of the Disney character Dumbo. Similar to the elephant in the 1941 animated movie produced by Walt Disney Productions, the Dumbo Octopus appears to be using these fins to float around.
These creatures roam around the ocean floor and contract when provoked
Whenever a member of the genus Grimpoteuthis has been observed in the deep ocean, they appear to be roaming around on the ocean floor. They do, however, feature a defense mechanism that allows them to jump from the floor and swim away using their fins. This is, however, surely not enough to avoid predators. What’s fascinating is that they don’t have an inc sac to scare away predators or the ability to change color to camouflage themselves. How they manage to avoid being caught rather easily remains a mystery.
They have several predators despite the extreme depth where they live
One of the most interesting dumbo octopus facts is that they are the deepest living octopuses that have ever been discovered. The deepest they have ever been found was in 2020 near the Java Trench off the coast of Sumatra Indonesia. One individual was roaming around at a depth of 6,957 meters (22,824 feet). One of the reasons why they are living at such depths is to avoid the abundance of predators who see them as a great meal.
Where do Dumbo Octopuses live?
Being referred to as Pelagic animals doesn’t tell us much about where these creatures live. The pelagic zone is divided into many different regions based on depth. The Dumpbo Octopus can be found on the abyssal plains of the ocean floor. They live at depths of anywhere between 1,000 and 7,000 meters (3,280 and 22,965 feet).