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from WIRED

How the Freaky Octopus Can Help Us Understand the Human Brain

How the Freaky Octopus Can Help us Understand the Human Brain. The octopus is weird: eerily malleable body, sucker-studded arms, skin that can transform into a convincing facsimile of seaweed—or sand—in a flash. It can solve mazes, open jars, use tools. It even has what seems to be a sophisticated inner life. What’s confusing about all this is that the octopus has a brain unlike that of almost any creature we might think of as intelligent.

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Octopuses have 2 eyes and 4 pairs of arms and are bilaterally symmetric. An octopus has a hard beak, with its mouth at the center point of the arms. Octopus lack an internal or external skeleton allowing them to squeeze through tight places. Octopuses are among the most intelligent and behaviorally flexible of all invertebrates.

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THE COCONUT OCTOPUS Photograph by Mario Neumann. Amphioctopus marginatus, also known as the coconut octopus or veined octopus, is a medium-sized cephalopod belonging to the genus Amphioctopus. It is found in tropical waters of the western Pacific Ocean

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Blue clover - by ~serdarsuer. Octopuses are among the most intelligent and behaviorally flexible of all invertebrates. All octopuses are venomous, but only one group, the blue-ringed octopus, is known to be deadly to humans.

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Octopus - Though these slimy, slinky eight-armed mollusks are a bit creepy – they have no skeleton so can morph their body to squeeze through tight spaces – they can be quite endearing. For one thing, they're probably the most intelligent of all invertebrates (they're very good at getting out of tanks when kept as pets) and their staring eyes have a soulful look about them. Credit: Marc Tule/Scripps

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