If you thought that humans and primates were the only capable of making tools for their benefit, or walking on two limbs, you were wrong. Observational studies of a specific species of octopus long ago changed all previous theories on this matter. And that octopus is the Anfioctopus marginatus.
The Anfioctopus marginatus or coconut octopus inhabits the western Pacific and Indian oceans and prefers the shallow coastal waters of southern Japan, Australia, New Guinea and South Africa, so it’s easy to locate it also in bays, lagoons and other inlets as well.
Its diet is based on crabs, clams and shrimp, which it hunts by combining active and passive predatory techniques.
In these images captured by Denise McIntyre, a 29-year-old laboratory technician in the Lembeh Strait, Indonesia, in October 2019, you can see that these octopuses are also very curious. Although this is not the truly surprising thing about this fascinating animal.
Animal capable of walking on two limbs
One of its most striking characteristics of these octopus species is the ability to walk with its limbs adopting a bipedal posture. Coconut octopus is able to use the common method of other species and also walking alone with two arms outstretched and it does so while carrying a coconut shell on its head as a form of shield and camouflage.
The latter has to do with another of the features that make it special: using tools. Coconut octopus is dedicated to actively searching for coconut shells and empty shells of different sizes for different uses.
Some may be useful as camouflage helmets; others are useful as shields; and others, such as stackable blocks for shelters. This means that coconut octopus is selective in the raw materials it uses for its tools.