The Hebrew University of Jerusalem – Octopuses co-ordinate and move their eight arms, with simple elegance sans any rhythm. Guy Levy, a neurobiology postdoctoral researcher who led the study concluded that each arm of an octopus is muscular, flexible and soft and works as if it consists of infinite joints. The study was conducted at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Until now, the scientists had failed to find out the reason behind the complex crawling movements of the octopuses.


According to the study published in the Cell Press journal Current Biology, octopuses coordinate their arms for crawling using unique strategies. Octopuses are bilateral symmetric cephalopods due to which their right and the left sides are exactly the mirror images of each other. Just as any other bilateral-symmetric animals (except crab), octopuses face forward when they are making any movement.  The study reports say that the researchers watched and carefully observed the octopuses’ video by frame to frame to understand this complex moving strategy of these cephalopods.

Surprising Facts Revealed

Some of the interesting facts were revealed during the research. These animals have a weird body, a sophisticated brain and highly flexible arms. Octopus despite a symmetrical body can crawl in all the directions whichever way they want to coordinate with their body orientation. Both the direction of the crawling and the body orientation do not show any rhythmical patterns that are controlled independently.

Evolution of Octopus

Guy Levy has opined that either octopus does not follow a certain pattern for movement and coordination or if it is present, it is too complicated to be identified right now. These animals are thought to be evolved from animals just like the clams having an outer shell for protection without any movement. The researchers believe that during the process of evolution the octopuses lost their protective, heavy shells due to which their hands became more maneuverable. However, this has also made their arms more vulnerable.

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