Don’t just bolt it down! Chew it until there’s no doubting it’s dead. Especially if it’s an octopus.
Stephens says that the 4.6-pound cephalopod appeared to have grabbed onto Gilligan’s larynx with a tentacle, preventing it from reconnecting to the dolphin’s breathing apparatus and effectively suffocating him to death.
“That octopus might have been, in theory, dead, but the sucker was still functional,” Stephens says, adding that while nobody wins in a situation like this, “the octopus gets a bit of a last hurrah.”
What a horrible way to go — not only choking to death, but getting your post mortem photo plastered on websites as an example of gluttony. Or being murdered by a mammal, and having your arms shown dangling from its mouth.
Alas, dolphins are not well equipped to chew their food.
But, it does appear that it’s food nearly had the opportunity to chew its predators larynx.
So does he get to be a member of The Seven, posthumously?
I wonder how often something similar happens to sperm whales?
SC (Salty Current) says
Coincidentally, I just watched My Octopus Teacher.
The headline to that article feels like it buries the lead a bit. Should either be Octopus defends against dolphin attack, dies trying or Octopus gets final act of revenge, kills dolphin :P
@3 I think that due to the size of the sperm whale, including the size of the their teeth, it is a lot harder for their cephalopod prey to gain a similar upper hand. Not that they don’t sustain injuries (many have shown scarring from battles with the various sized squid they eat). Also due to how deep they tend to dive to acquire their food, it is probable that we will never know if a prey animal of a sperm whale did successfully “win” a battle as the corpse probably just sank to the bottom of the ocean…
It might be useful to have two sets of jaws, like the moray eel and the xenomorph.
SC (Salty Current) says
My Octopus Teacher (I really dislike the title for some reason, which is probably why it took me so long to see it) came out in 2020. Won the Oscar for Best Documentary. Here’s the trailer.
The most parsimonius way to process food would be to emulate The Blob.
Well, it wouldn’t be the first hungry carnivore to bite off more than it could chew… eyes bigger than stomach, so to speak.
here’s one not behind a paywall
shoulda listened to its mom. “Chew that, don’t just hork it down! Take smaller mouthfuls!”
Reginald Selkirk says
10 comments in, and no one has made a joke about Gilligan’s name?
And I thought I had trouble chewing octopus sushi. All I wound up with was a messy floss job trying to dislodge the suckers from my teeth. Octopus is like a cross between flavorless gum and a piece of dish sponge. But I was lucky, not trying to swallow a live one whole.
Orcas manage to subdue frickin’ white sharks and this bozo gets offed by an octopus.
BTW I have been wondering about My Octopus Teacher. I already got spoiled by reading about the ending which I guess was inevitable.
Er, pretty sure it was dead in practice too – or dying or was it?
(From the link) Erm, that’s NOT a “cut” exactly more a sucker stick thing – tho’ guess its beak or, do they not have some barbs on their suckers or something like that, might have also cut too? But yeah, that pedantry aside, don’t mess with them!
@11 well I wouldn’t be too impressed by an Orca’s ability to subdue great whites. An orca is typically larger on average than most great whites (male Orcas range from 6 to 8 meters, whereas most great whites are only around 5 meters or less on average), and travel in pods. Subduing a shark, any shark, just involves flipping them over. As much as I love the Great White, and I do, they tend to be easy meals for Orcas who are interested in eating them and their livers.