ID assistance: Octopuses of the Galapagos and Red Sea?

Oct 31, 2005
Hi all,
I wondered if anyone might be able to confirm for us that the octopuses in the Octopus and Octopus 2 videos on are the Common octopus, Octopus vulgaris. I think they probably are but I'd like to be sure in case there are reef octopuses of some sort in the Red Sea and the Galapagos (we shot both videos in the Galapagos and Red Sea in 2002).

We have a few cephalopod species online as well and plan to post the most common and endangered cephalopods to help with marine conservation efforts... (we love cephs too). If anyone would be interested in collaborating somehow to help us raise awareness of marine conservation issues effecting cephalopods, let me know.

Here's a Caribbean reef octopus(?) we shot in Utila, Honduras in September:

Well, that certainly looks like what I've seen in aquarium shops out here described as "Caribbean Reef Octopus" - right down to the proportions, coloration, etc.
They certainly look like the (Pacific) day reef octopus (Octopus cyanea). The white spots on the arms and the two dark eye-spots (not always visible) can usually identify this animal. But the Galapagos does seem a little far east and cold for its normal distribution. I'm not familiar with the octos over there.

Also- the Mimic octopus popped up on one of your links. The species description is out and its official name is now Thaumoctopus mimicus , Norman and Hochberg 2005.
Great Footage!! Both videos are o. cyanea, also know as the Hawaiian day octopus, hence all of the daytime activity. The two spots under the eyes are a dead giveaway along with the white spots on the arm. As far as I know, o. vulgaris is not endimec to the pacific.

I'll be using that site in my sculpture research!!
Thanks for the kudos, the videos were shot in the Galapagos first and then most was in the Red Sea...?

Thanks for the official name for the Mimic, our species home page has been updated.
So it looks like the photo above is definitely the Caribbean reef octopus, Octopus briareus and the movies are of the Galapagos reef octopus, O. oculifer (first 32 seconds) and the rest are Day octopuses, O. cyanea in the Red Sea. Thanks for all your help!

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