“Beautiful little octopus” found floating amid plastic garbage near Hawaii

Written by on October 25, 2018 in Critter MIA - No comments

They are tiny. They are mighty.

But only thanks to marine ecologists were they salvaged from a marine dumping ground.

Hawaii scientists found two tiny baby octopuses stuck amid plastic trash they were scooping up as they monitored coral reefs.

So so tiny. Kaloko-Honokōhau National Historical Park Hawaii/Facebook

Marine ecologist Sallie Beavers of Kaloko-Honokōhau National Historical Park told the Associated Press the octopuses were the size of green peas — perhaps a smidge bigger.

Common to Hawaii, they were likely either day octopus or night octopus, she added, and while teeny tiny now, could grow to 12 pounds (5.4 kilograms) with arm spans of 3 feet (1 metre.)

The U.S. Department of the Interior raised the profile of the find this week with a social media post.

But the miniature creatures were actually found in the summer.

“During a surface break from coral reef monitoring our Marine Biologists noticed something small when they picked up several items of floating plastic marine debris,” the park posted on Facebook. “On there next dive, our Geoscientists in Parks intern Ashley Pugh released the octopus safe and sound in a small protected space!”

Geoscientists in Parks intern Ashley Pugh with “this beautiful little octopus” found among the debris, but safely released the octopus. Kaloko-Honokōhau National Historical Park Hawaii/Facebook

But you may want to rethink how adorable they are.

Here’s a photo of another baby octopus taken by the dive team (again found on plastic debris) attacking and killing a baby crab.

“Maybe they aren’t so cute?” the park added.

“Another baby octopus taken by the dive team (again found on plastic debris) attacking and killing a baby crab. Maybe they aren’t so cute?” the national historic park asks.

But let’s focus on the cute and the saved.

Ink-squirting and squee. Kaloko-Honokōhau National Historical Park Hawaii/Facebook

Photos Kaloko-Honokohau National Historic Park/Facebook

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Recovering newspaper reporter.

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