Cephalopods, Crustaceans, & Other Shellfish Archives - Oceana

Flamboyant Cuttlefish

The flamboyant cuttlefish has two tentacles and eight arms. When pursuing their prey, the cuttlefish uses their tentacles to quickly reach out and strike their target and bring it to their beak to feed . Flamboyant cuttlefish are carnivorous, and their diet includes bony fish and crustaceans. Their primary predators include seals, dolphins, and larger … Read more

Coconut Octopus

The coconut octopus is usually 3 inches (8 centimeters) long, extending to 6 inches (15 centimeters) long including the arms which usually feature light colored suckers to contrast with the overall dark colors of the rest of the octopus. Though named for their use of coconuts as tools for defense, the coconut octopus can also … Read more

Hawaiian Bobtail Squid

The squid is a “sit and wait” predator, burying itself in the sand with its eight suckered arms and two tentacles to wait for prey to pass by. They then strike with their tentacles to capture their prey. If they happen to miss their target, the animal will bury itself back in the sand to … Read more

Decorator Crab

In general, decorator crabs are opportunistic when looking for camouflage, similar to how Colorful Hermit Crabs scavenge their shells. The crab will select pieces of seaweed, coral, rocks, or even other small animals from around its habitat and then fastens them to hooked bristles on the back of its shell. This camouflage helps protect the … Read more

Giant Pacific Octopus

Aside from being the largest of all octopuses, the giant Pacific octopus is also recognizable by its typical reddish-pink color. The octopus is equipped with special pigment cells, called chromatophores, just below the surface of the skin that allow it to change color and blend in with rocky or coral-laden surroundings. Octopuses are actually mollusks—their … Read more

Striped Pyjama Squid

Despite its common name, the striped pyjama squid is actually a species of cuttlefish, a versatile animal that can often change its appearance, has an internal shell, eight arms and two feeding tentacles. The striped pyjama squid’s small and rounded appearance like that of a dumpling has inspired other people to commonly refer to it as … Read more

Chambered Nautilus

The chambered nautilus lives in deep waters of the open ocean and is one of very few species of shelled invertebrates that live in the water column instead of in contact with the seafloor or reef surface. The animal only lives in the outermost chamber of the shell. The other chambers are filled with gas that … Read more

Broadclub Cuttlefish

Broadclub cuttlefish are active predators and feed on a variety of fish and invertebrate prey. In addition to their ability to use camouflage to sneak up on prey, they flash several colors and waves of light toward their prey, apparently to hypnotize it. They then strike with their feeding tentacles and pull the prey toward their beaked … Read more

Blue King Crab

Blue king crabs are covered with a spiny exoskeleton that provides them some protection from potential predators, but at different stages of its lifecycle, the species is preyed upon by fishes, octopuses, and other predators. Blue king crabs are omnivorous and will eat just about any dead or decaying organic matter (plant or animal) and … Read more

Antarctic Krill

Antarctic krill are filter feeders that eat tiny phytoplankton (pelagic algae). They use their small, hair-like legs to filter out these microscopic algae that bloom in the nutrient-rich waters around Antarctica. These blooms are densest at the ice edge, so Antarctic krill are often also densest near that system. Few species as large as the Antarctic krill can … Read more