Aug 10, 2023
Hull, England
Hi! I’m Lily, a 21-year-old cephalopod lover from Hull, England. I’m about to enter my third year of a Marine Biology undergraduate degree and have my heart completely set on studying cephalopods and their intelligence for the rest of my life; I often joke that my career goal is to have an octopus beat me at snap (sounds like a bad joke but actually sums up pretty much all the aspects of intelligence I want to study - motor skills, pattern recognition, their ability to learn a very simple game of cards and whether or not they are capable of understanding the rules to a point at which they can beat me!).

I always liked cephs when I was younger, but when I started a marine bio degree in 2020 on complete impulse I really fell hard, at first wanting to study giant squid and their life histories and then becoming really interested in the intelligence of octopus and cuttlefish. At the present moment I’m really into cuttlefish, with a soft spot for Sepia apama (I’m going to visit Spencer Gulf in 2025-6!!!!) and their visual displays.

I’ve joined this forum on a whim because I really want to make connections with other current and future cephalopod lovers, and also I desperately want to know how Roger T. Hanlon got his job as the world expert on cephalopods. Please reach out and make friends with me if we’re in any way similar; my friends tolerate me infodumping about octopus at them, but I’d absolutely love to have some friends I can really geek out with.

Thank you!
Welcome @lilykcleary! Glad you've joined our community :octopus2:

Perhaps @Bret Grasse MBL can tell us how Dr. Hanlon started out on his cephy path :mrgreen:
Hello Lily,

My best advice is just keep doing what your doing! You can't teach passion. Work hard, seize every available opportunity (especially unpaid), and make yourself as experienced and marketable as possible. Stay positive, network where you can, and opportunities will become available. You have to start somewhere, so think about volunteering at any local aquarium that might have cephalopods or marine animals and go from there. Good luck and best wishes,

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