Posted by: Kaj Maney
Mimic Octopus are not called ‘mimics’ because they mimic an octopus, but because we believe they mimic other creatures. They have been seen to imitate crabs and mantis shrimp (by scrunching up their bodies in holes in the sand), sea snakes (again in a hole in the sand, but this time spreading out two tentacles on either side of it’s body, making a snake) and, most famously, a flounder or sole, which they do by pulling it’s arms back along it’s body, flattening itself out and then gliding along the sand, mimicking a flat fish.
The very observant among you may have noticed that I have never posted a video of these wonderful creatures. This is mainly because they are tricky to film with my macro lens..but this week I finally got something worth sharing and in this video you can see the Mimic as it glides along the sandy bottom, doing it’s mimicking.
And the last bit of the video shows something I had never seen.. Two Mimics having a fight!!!! I presume over territory. I was filming one Mimic and unknown to me, there was another Mimic nearby. Before I knew what was happening, the larger Mimic started to chase the smaller one all over the place, until it finally caught it. Once caught, they both proceeded to wrestle and writhe, until they shot off in opposite directions. The smaller one then started wiggling it’s arms in a bizarre way. I think there may have been a bit of ‘boy on boy’ action, and one of them didn’t feel good about it after!!
To ID an Mimic and not to mistake it for a Wonderpus (another amazing Octopus we get here – click here for link to previous blog about a Wonderpus), I have highlighted a bright white ‘V’ on the end of it’s body which never changes colour and only exists on the Mimic.
The rest of the week has been very good. The House Reef once again produced an amazing find, as Barb found a Little Green Shrimp this week, right next to the dock, only 7m (20ft) deep.
And on the boat dives we’ve seen more Mimics, Wonderpus, Blue Rings, Coconut, Algae and Long Arm Octopus. We’ve seen Broadclub, Pygmy and Flamboyant Cuttlefish, with a large female laying her eggs. We also saw Reef Squid and some of the eggs hatching! Frogfish have included Giant, Painted, Randal’s, Warty, Occellated (Coin Bearing) and Hairy. Crustaceans have been great, with Harlequin Shrimp, Harlequin Crabs, Little Green Shrimp, Hairy Shrimp, Bumblebee Shrimp, Tiger Shrimp, Skeleton Shrimp, Coleman Shrimp, Brook’s Urchin Shrimp, Zebra Crabs, Dragon Shrimp, Boxer Crabs, Halimeda Crabs, Sea Star Shrimp, Xeno Crabs, Banded Tozeuma Shrimp, Occellated Tozeuma Shrimp, Whip Coral Shrimp, Superb Coral Shrimp, Snapping Shrimp, Donald Duck Shrimp, Porcelain Crabs, Candy Crabs, Carry Crabs, Orang Utan Crabs, Sumo Crabs, Elegant Squat Lobster, Hairy Squat Lobster, Squat Shrimp, Emperor Shrimp, Decorator Crabs and many more. There have been Ornate, Robust and Rough Snout Ghost Pipefish, as well as yellow and pink Bargabantis Pygmy Seahorses, Pontohi Pygmy Seahorses, Common, Thorny and Estuary Seahorses, Lembeh Pygmy Seadragons, Pipehorses and Winged, Orange Banded, Ringed and Network Pipefish. And there have been Ambon Scorpionfish, juvenile Zebra Batfish, Ribbon Eels,, Pegasus Sea Moths, Lembeh Velvetfish, Melibe Nudis, Bobbit Worms, Electric Clams, Snake Eels, Mandarinfish, Leaf Scorpionfish, Stonefish and much much more.
Thanks to all our great guests from the States, the UK, Italy, the Ukraine, Japan, Australia and Hong Kong.
To enjoy all of Barb’s great photos from this week, just click on the film strip at the top or bottom of this blog.
Date Posted: September 24, 2012 @ 7:06 pm Comments (1)