Thursday, October 9, 2014

Celebrate Cephalopods!!!

 "Rebecca Kibler/Marine Photobank."
While giant pods of sperm whales in California made the headlines, Neptune 911 loves that we are smack in the middle of Cephalopod Awareness Days!

So let's wave our tentacles in the air and celebrate the amazing cephalopod.  WHOA!  That's a big word!

Try saying it really fast eight times (like the eight arms of an octopus)--or ten times like the ten arms of a squid.

Members of the "Cephalopod Club" include octopus, squid and cuttlefish.  If they had a bone in their back, they could not have joined this very special boneless-club.

These creatures of the deep sea are fascinating. Here are some facts from Cephalopods ofthe World, a free UN FAO illustrated fact sheet on nearly every living cephalopod.

  • Cephalopods are represented in the fossil record dating back 500 million years.
  • There are about 800 species of living cephalopods known to science, with many more as yet to be discovered.
  • Since ancient times, cephalopods have been a recurring motif in myth, arts and literature and they remain a subject of popular culture today.
  • Cephalopod are an important fishery with catches steadily increasing over the last 30 years, from about 1 million metric tonnes in 1970 to more than 3 million tonnes in 2001.
  • There are no species of cephalopod currently listed on the UN endangered species. However, this is more a testament to how little we know about these animals than a true indication of their conservation needs.

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