Thursday, January 28, 2010

The San Onofre Tree Octopus

The San Onofre Tree Octopus (Murphus Where-Aboutsus Unknownus), not to be confused with the only other known tree octopus, the Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus (Octopus paxarbolis), can be found in the trees of the of the San Onofre Creek basin on the west coast of North America. These solitary cephalopods reach an average size of 30-33 cm. Unlike most other cephalopods, tree octopuses are amphibious, spending only their early life and the period of their mating season in their ancestral aquatic environment. Because of specialized skin adaptations, they are able to keep from becoming desiccated for prolonged periods of time, but given the chance they would prefer resting in pooled water.

An intelligent and inquisitive being (it has the largest brain-to-body ratio for any mollusk), the tree octopus explores its arboreal world by both touch and sight. Reaching out with one of his eight arms, each covered in sensitive suckers, a tree octopus might grab a branch to pull himself along in a form of locomotion called tentaculation; or he might be preparing to strike at an insect or small vertebrate, such as a frog or rodent, or steal an egg from a bird's nest; or he might even be examining some object that caught his attention, manipulating it with his dexterous limbs in order to better know it.

The reproductive cycle of the tree octopus is still linked to its roots in the waters off San Onofre from where it is thought to have originated. Every year, in Spring, tree octopuses leave their homes in the San Onofre Creek basin and migrate towards the shore and, eventually, their spawning grounds in the kelp beds offshore. There, they congregate and find mates. After the male has deposited his sperm, he returns to the trees of the creek basin, leaving the female to find an aquatic lair in which to attach her strands of egg-clusters. The female will guard and care for her eggs until they hatch, refusing even to eat. The young will spend the six weeks floating in the kelp beds before eventually moving out of the water and beginning their adult lives in the trees of the creek basin.

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

Sicknee Esq. youse gots balls alright. As long as your on a
roll (sesame or whatever) put a daily recipe like squid ambrosia for us to enjoy. You are our great white hope okay, bro.

[RSVP]

Sydney Rocks ! ! ! ! ! ! said...

Another classic, Sydney, another classic. I know that I can depend on you and Dr. Ralph to post the latest and most interesting information from the world of science. Keep up the good work.

Pharmacist's Mate, 2nd Class said...

A boy and his girlfriend decide to have sex for the first time. The girl tells the boy to bring protection, and that night after he meets her parents they will make love.

He goes to the pharmacy and talks to the pharmacist about condoms and how to buy them. The boy tells him that he is really nervous and that his girlfriend is a virgin and the pharmacist talks to him for about an hour about sex.

He goes to his girlfriends house later that night, meets her parents and they sit down for dinner. The mother asks him to say grace and he bows his head in silence. Five minutes pass, ten minutes - total silence. After twenty minutes the girl leans close and says:

"I didn't know you were so religious."

He replies "I didn't know your father was a pharmacist."

Anonymous said...

Gotdamn it Sy Esq., you have them rolling in the ailse.

Anonymous said...

Esq., are you pulling our leg. Next thing you'll be saying pigs fly. What gives?

Anonymous said...

What! There ain't no such animal. What do you think we just fell off the avacado truck or what?

Anonymous said...

That's where the 11 Paskowitz had there tent. Right at the San Mateo creek where the flying octopuses had the cotopi tree. Damn Sydney, you had that pegged alright. Great job.

Kitty Gato said...

My pleasure, I am sure.

Murphy said...

I met this girl at her apartment, she was still getting ready and I patiently waited in the living room for our first date. I needed to piss so I walked myself into the hallway washroom... lifted the toilet seat to see the biggest dump I have ever laid eyes on, just chilling in the bowl. The date went well... and I continued to date the girl for 2 years.

Anonymous said...

Ugh, Murphy, I bet it was a porcelain bowl toilet for sure where the corn-log floated.

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