A moment of silence, please: Paul the oracle octopus, who confounded mathematicians and delighted World Cup fans (and cephalopod lovers) this summer, has died of natural causes at his home zoo in Germany.
The clever cephalopod correctly forecasted the outcome of eight World Cup soccer matches, including the final.
Will Paul’s successor prove to be as precocious? We’ll just have to wait and see...
As you probably already know, Paul the Oracle Octopus maintained his perfect record this weekend, predicting World Cup victories for both Germany and Spain in their respective matches. So, in honor of Paul’s fine work, today’s Fact of the Day (or FOD) is about his species, the common octopus.
The common octopus is one of the smartest invertebrates in the world, with both a short and long-term memory. When in a bind to escape a predator, this octopus can lose an arm and re-grow it later without any long-term damage. (But I’d bet it’s not very comfortable and is something the octopus would rather forget!)
For more octo-information (or information on your favorite fishy friends), check out Oceana.org/explore and check back tomorrow for another FOTD!
We all knew cephalopods were smart. But who knew they were psychic? Paul the octopus has gained worldwide fame for his 100% accuracy in predicting Germany's 2010 World Cup matches.
Paul, who lives in the Sea Life Aquarium in Oberhausen, Germany, correctly foresaw the winner of each of Germany’s 2010 World Cup games, even when Germany lost to both Serbia and Spain. So far, during his entire career as the octopus oracle, Paul has only incorrectly predicted one game. (In 2008, Paul incorrectly chose Germany to beat Spain in the UEFA European Football Championship finals.)