There’s a new guy in the Olympic Coast Sanctuary exhibit.

Say hello to the newest giant Pacific octopus.

This new octopus is a male, the first male in a long time. First thing this morning, Senior Aquarist Bill Murphy eased the cephalopod into a transport bag and then into his new home in the Olympic Coast Sanctuary exhibit. The whole operation took just a few minutes, and he immediately started exploring his new home. 

The New Guy: Giant Pacific Octopus

The female in the front display was none too impressed by the new arrival. She didn’t budge from her favorite corner of the exhibit, except for flailing a few arms in his direction. But even if they do take interest in each other, they won’t be able to meet, which is a good thing because octopuses are usually solitary characters. The two displays are separated by a tall sheet of glass, letting you observe both octopuses at the same time! 

How can you tell male and female octopus apart?

Take a look at the octopus’ third arm counting clockwise when looking straight down on top of him. Males have no suckers toward the tip of it. This is what is used to deliver sperm packets to the female. No, we’re not going to let the two breed. We don’t have the proper setup for breeding, and it might not be safe for them. We also don’t have the capabilities to raise larvae.


More Pictures

He eased out of the bag.
giant pacific octopus
And he's home!
giant pacific octopus
Our new arrival took a while to inspect his new digs.

Make your way down to Central Wharf and come say hello to the two giant Pacific octopuses  in our Olympic Coast Sanctuary exhibit!