November 06, 2006

Octopus: Genius of the deep - New research has shown that octopuses and their relatives, the goat, are far more intelligent than previously thought. Proposals are being drawn up in the EU to offer octopuses and their kind the same protection in laboratories as monkeys.

You've probably heard of Octopuses that open jars, as many aquariums now feature this clever display, but you may not realise quite how brainy these ugly little sucker-footed bastards really are. 'Octopuses and their cephalopod cousins the cuttlefish and the squid are evolutionary oxymorons: big-brained invertebrates that display many cognitive, behavioral, and affective traits once considered exclusive to the higher vertebrates. They challenge the deep-seated notion that intelligence advanced from fish and amphibians to reptiles, birds, mammals, early primates, and finally humans.' Video of an octopus camouflaging to complete invisible (YouTube) I have always thought that when we finally encounter extraterrestrial intelligences out there in the cosmos, they will more likely resemble the Octopus than humanoids. And with that in mind, here is a recipe for fried Calamari.