uw Critters of the Lembeh Strait | The Coconut Octopus

Critters of the Lembeh Strait | The Coconut Octopus

 

The coconut octopus or veined octopus (Amphioctopus marginatus) is one of our favorite critters in Lembeh. It uses “tools” like shells and coconuts to build a hiding place and is often seen ‘walking’ on two arms with these tools in the other arms. This behavior is called bipedal locomotion. Some species are very greedy and try to take as many tools as they can carry, which sometimes is just too much to handle. The coconut octopus is a solitary cephalopod.

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uw Critters of the Lembeh Strait | The Mimic Octopus

Critters of the Lembeh Strait | The Mimic Octopus

 

The mimic octopus (Thaumoctopus mimicus) is an Indo-Pacific species of octopus and is able to change skin color and texture in order to blend in with the environment. Like other octopus species, the mimic octopus possesses chromatophores and changes shapes while moving over the sandy bottoms where it is often found. In Lembeh we can watch these amazing critters on the muck dive sites. The mimic octopus is often confused with the Wonderpus (Wunderpus photogenicus) which looks similar, but has a few things which look different to the Mimic, one of the most obvious is the white line all along the underside of the arms on the Mimic, which the Wonderpus doesn’t have.

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Rhinopias frondosa in the Lembeh Strait / Sulawesi / Indonesia

Critters of the Lembeh Strait | Episode 03 – 2017 | June Highlights

 

Our June highlights video is a masterpiece worthy of the Mozart symphony it’s set to. Frogfishes, mimic and blue-ringed octopus, ornate ghost pipefishes, unusual footage of a mantis shrimp cleaning house, a stunning yellow weedy rhinopias and a xenia coral shrimp…oh, and if you pay attention, you might even catch a glimpse of Sascha putting in a cameo appearance himself – very Hitchcock!

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Sanddiver (Trichonotus elegans) close-up  in the Lembeh Strait

Critters of the Lembeh Strait | Episode 02 – 2017 | May Highlights

May is associated with flowers, renewal and new life and in Lembeh, May was no exception. This latest highlights video features some extraordinary footage of juvenile sea life like harlequin shrimps and tiger shrimps. We also filmed some unusual scenes with a very fast lens, featuring glass fish swimming behind soft coral (yes there is also beautiful coral in Lembeh!), creating footage that evokes spring-time fireflies in a flower garden. Watch for a close-up shot of an elegant sand diver’s eye which seems to mimic rays of sunshine – catch this rare glimpse of a very shy fish seldom caught on video and enjoy! Best watched in 4K!

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Critters of the Lembeh Strait | Episode 01 – 2017 | April Highlights

What better way to wake up than with a glorious dive in Lembeh featuring our favorite sea-creatures? If you can’t be here to enjoy today’s sightings in person, then grab a coffee and enjoy this latest video of April highlights including graceful cockatoo waspfishes, a blue-ring octopus and a rare Randall’s frogfish with a brilliant red spot near the base of the tail.

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Critters of the Lembeh Strait | Episode 13 – 2016 | Highlights of the Year

This highlights of 2016 video is a spectacular fireworks-like display of the brightest and best critters in Lembeh. Pulsating blue-ringed octopuses fall upon their crustacean prey, an iridescent bobbit worm shimmering with rainbow colors waits patiently for a meal and a vast array of rare and beautiful nudibranchs all appear, along with one of the cutest and most unexpected buddy pairs you’ve ever seen – see if you can spot it near the end of the video. Enjoy the video and may 2017 bring you great critterful dives, health and happiness!

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Critters of the Lembeh Strait | SEA WARS – Blue-ring Octopus

Did you know that the deadly, highly venomous blue-ring octopus cannot tell the sex of another blue-ring at first sight? They have to feel the other one first in order to be able to figure it out. An encounter can be witnessed in this video where two blue-ring octopuses (Hapalochlaena sp.) meet each other for the first time. Love at first sight or disaster date? Watch to find out!

 

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Critters of the Lembeh Strait | Episode 11 – 2016 | October Highlights

In the last few months we’ve been very lucky and have had an extraordinary number of coconut octopuses (Amphioctopus marginatus) on dives in Lembeh. These intelligent critters are the only mollusk known to use tools, and everyone who sees them agrees they have the most fascinating behaviour! Other awesome sightings included harlequin shrimp, hairy frogfishes galore and the rare magnificent shrimp goby with its sail-like dorsal fin and dapper red-and-white partner shrimp. We hope you enjoy the video as much as we do!

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Critters of the Lembeh Strait | Episode 13 – 2015 | Eye Spy A Little Eye

Our eagle-eyed guides seem to be magic – where you might only see a bare sandy slope, they find a cornucopia of beautiful underwater animals to show you. In this video you first see these talented guides’ eyes (‘how did he find that?!’, everyone says), and from there we move on to close-up footage of some of the most fascinating critters’ eyes. Mantis shrimp are featured, with the most complex eyes on the planet, along with other striking critter ‘peepers’ such as those of the puffer fish, crocodile flathead and, one of our favorites, the footage of the blue-ringed octopus’ eyes with the chromatophores pulsating and changing color is mesmerizing.

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