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Daring octopus escape at Seattle Aquarium or something else entirely? (VIDEO)

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SEATTLE —  Was it a daring escape attempt thwarted at the last minute?

RELATED: Lion uses mouth to open car door, passengers keep cool and keep rolling video

Or was it an incredibly intelligent and agile creature new to its environment exploring its boundaries?

Video, posted online earlier this week, shows the octopus seemingly attempting to topple over the lip of its enclosure at the Seattle Aquarium.  At the last minute an aquarium staffer can be seen helping the animal stay in its tank.

The video quickly went viral with websites posting and reposting the video all over with breathless headlines about a daring escape.

But the Seattle Aquarium’s Tim Kuniholm tells Q13 FOX News ‘video has been blown out of proportion.’

Kuniholm said the octopus in the video is named Ink.

“It’s a new octopus “Ink” in a new exhibit exploring his boundaries,” said Kuniholm.  “In the video that’s been shared by the public it’s one of our staff members helping Ink bank into his exhibit after exploring the edge.”

The Seattle Aquarium does regular work with the Giant Pacific Octopus species found here in Puget Sound.  Just a few weeks ago the aquarium released two of its octopuses back into the sound.

Here is video of Hazel’s release:

Here is video of Franklin’s release:


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  • Nancy

    the Bens n Jerry ice cream post that saying they thinking or bout to lace their ice cream with mj weed marijuana take FDA to approve this doubt they will. Our little ones eat this ice cream so far the ingredients used is not harmful nor does it contain any drugs or ACHOLOL in it . This company just greedy do anything for more money they make trillions already,they have no real values ,morals or respect for the people who buy their products. No I not hatting on them its what they going to do that makes me say NO ‼‼‼‼

    • Sharon

      What does your comment have to do with the octopus story? Now, to comment on the topic…what is to prevent the octopus from climbing up the wall again and “escaping”? It’s a fairly small tank with an open top.

      • Crane Slaughter

        Did you even read the article? He wasn’t trying to escape. (Octopus can fit through nearly any sized opening, as small as a quarter) He was testing his boundaries and seeing the entire enclosure that he was new to. Even the aquarium said in the article that this was not an “escape”. Octopuses are really quite smart.

        • Sabrina Ray

          Did you even read the octopus’ mind? Just because they say he wasn’t trying to escape doesn’t mean he wasn’t. He is a wild creature. Let me put that lady in a tank and see if she just “tests her boundaries”. I do agree that octopuses are very intelligent animals hence the reason why they should not be caged for our entertainment.

          • Ollie Twist

            not 20 feet away from the area the octopus is in is lots of goodies……urchins, starfish and the like in an open area…….so i’m sure he was just going for a snack. I agree that they shouldn’t be caged, but it is nice that they are only kept for a couple of months and then released…… i wish the same could be said about the other animals.

          • Stephanie

            Well said!! People do not own animals. Its about time everybody leave animals in natural habitat. Humans destroy so much. Admire them from afar and respect them.

    • Positive Pete

      Lol Nancy, way to read that article WAY out of context. Ben & Jerry specifically said they were not opposed to the idea, but they would want to make sure that the way it goes about production isn’t target to children. Also, wrong section of the news dear, find a better place to troll.

    • Steve Weitz

      Nancy, Ben and Jerry’s is not saying that they want to sell Marijuana infused ice cream on the open market (available to just anyone). They are considering supplying Medical Marijuana Dispensaries that already sell other edibles. If and when recreational use becomes legal according to the feds, then it would be sold with restrictions similar to the restrictions for the sale of alcohol. None of this product would be stocked along with the “regular” ice cream. But hey … the octopus videos were way cool!!!

    • Chris

      Actually, they said they love the IDEA of having a THC-enhanced ice cream, not that they had any plans to make it. Besides, medical marijuana comes in edible form i.e. cookies, brownies, candy. They should be treated like medicine and kept out of a child’s reach.

    • Stefanie Sanchez

      That article where you got that information was from The Onion, it’s a satirical publication. The information WAS NOT REAL! It was SATTIRE.

    • Michael Dalton

      Nancy, , what you’ve just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul.

    • Rose McDonald

      Nancy, no last name; You really should check out this stuff before you post it. And it wouldn’t hurt if you learned how to spell, too. But, then this is a Fox site, so truth and accuracy aren’t a requirement.By the way, I’ve copied your post and am forwarding it to Ben and Jerry’s for comment.

    • telzeyamberdon

      Are you being paid to spam articles that have nothing to do with this nonsense you’re either made up or gotten as a forwarded message from one of your dotty friends or relatives, or are you genuinely dotty yourself, a true believer earnestly posting your “truth” on the internet? A) What you wrote was crazy-talk and completely wrong and B) it has nothing to do with octopuses or aquariums. Go find an article about your crazy ice cream topic and post there. People like you sometimes make me wish one had to be tested and get a license to be allowed to post on the internet.

      Regarding the article: I think it was probably an escape attempt but the aquarium PR people put a spin on it by saying the octopus was “exploring his environment.” They don’t want to have to field questions from the well-meaning but clueless about their animals not wanting to be there, it’s better to nip that one right in the bud.

  • Jorge Aleman

    nancy stop being an idiot. they are not putting it in ALL icecream just a specific flavor.

    ” Our little ones eat this ice cream” no they dont… they eat what there parents provide them. if there parents are incapable of keeping this product out of the childs hands they should: 1 not have children( serious this Darwin thing is becoming an issue) and 2 should have there children taken away.

    “This company just greedy do anything for more money they make trillions already,they have no real values ,morals or respect for the people who buy their products” i want to see paperwork stating there yearly income….. i don’t think they make trillions. million MAYBE billions but don’t make outrageous accusations you look childish. but by all means lets destroy this evil company who employs thousands and people and provides them the funds to raise there families.

    “No I not hatting on them its what they going to do that makes me say NO” actually its sounds exactly like your hating on them….. boycott them if you must but i doubt that will make them flinch.

  • Kevin Kearns

    Wow was this ever an overblown story followed by a fairly disappointing video. I mean who knew that octopi could actually climb up a glass wall, I mean it’s not like they have suckers on their tentacles or anything to make it possible

    • Sara Stricherz

      Are you kidding? That video was hilarious. And even I got the heebie jeebies when 3 of the legs or whatever they’re called got over the edge. But the kids crying, and the one at the very end – “Mommy, can I go home?” Hahaha.

  • David Huntley (@DavHuntley)

    What a rookie mistake in terms of designing an enclosure for a Giant Octopus. Anybody who has ever worked with these animals know’s how persistent they can be when trying to escape. Guess they thought the “NEW” high wall enclosure was enough.

  • sondraslonim

    I’m not sure why so many people think that a captured animal trying to escape an artificial home is amusing. Personally, it makes me sick. All creatures should be left in their natural habitats. It’s only human arrogance that allows aquariums, zoos and circuses to exist.

    • McKatie

      They only keep the octopus’ for a couple months and then release them back to the wild. The octopus wasn’t likely trying to escape but exploring it’s new location. They are very curious animals. There is nothing dire or upsetting about this video.

    • Neph

      You can’t see the whole tank in the video – if you’d ever seen the Octopus tank in Seattle, you’d realize what you’re looking at there is only a section of a rather large enclosure – to the left you can partially see the top of the tube that leads to the other half of the enclosure.

  • Liz

    The octopus shouldn’t have boundaries it needs to explore. Living creatures shouldn’t be kept in captivity! Set it free!!

  • Aubrey Miller-Schmidt

    I’ve many times thought this enclosure was too small for these creatures. They should release this guy back into the wild and rethink their space requirements before putting any more animals in this problematic exhibit.

  • Melionda

    I don’t understand it. The aquarium of the pacific in long beach has to line the top of their octopus’s habitat with astroturf. If they didn’t do that, the octopus could easily escape.

    • McKatie

      I’m sorry, I’m all for animals to be protected and left to the wild for the most part, but all of you calling for this octopus to be released are overreacting to this and don’t have a clue about octopus’ or the quality of this aquarium.

      The aquarium only keeps these octopus’ for a month or two and then they return them to the wild. They are well taken care of while they are in the aquarium. This octopus was truly only likely exploring it’s new habitat. They are extremely curious, intelligent and adventurous animals and have been known to leave their enclosures, even unlocking them and going to gorge on other habitats in aquariums. He may have even seen the starfish nearby and thought it looked like an easy meal.

      This aquarium offers the amazing experience of seeing an octopus up close, which is a good way for others to learn about them and it brings attention to the need to for conservation of their wild habitat so they can continue to thrive in our waters.

    • DrBB

      “Octopi” is a common error based on the mistaken assumption that the word is Latin and thus requires the plural case ending for the declension ending in “-us.” But the “-pus” in octopus is actually derived from Greek, so if you wanted to go that way you’d have to say the plural was “octopodes.” Standard usage is to consider it an English word–which it is–and pluralize it “octopuses.” Even type-correct in this comment box recognizes it.

  • bob

    This is another example of Obama abuse. His tentacles are strangling everyone. I can almost hear Nugent’s Got you in a strangle Hold, Baby.

  • Debby

    Apparently octopus are very sensitive and actually have feelings and can think. They are more
    “real” than we realize!

  • The Deedsmeister

    I think the octopus found the environment in that tank unpleasant in some way. It wouldn’t ordinarliy risk climbing out of water, if it wasn’t unhappy.

  • DrBB

    I work at a major public aquarium in the northeast, and I have to question the wisdom of a container that is open at the top for one of these critters. They are very clever, inquisitive and incredibly dextrous animals that can get through any crack larger than their beak–the only solid body part they have. It’s well known they can climb out of their tanks that aren’t specifically designed to prevent them from doing so. Anecdotes about this–quite true ones–abound in the aquarium world. Presumably someone thought the high sides on this tank would do the trick. Evidently the octopus thought otherwise.

  • Cari77

    ” therefore recommend that precautions should be taken for all species of octopus kept in
    captivity. Keeping any species of octopus in an open tank risks the animal’s wel-
    fare, although there are large differences between species. When in doubt, secure
    the tank well (see Appendix)…… Although Boyle (1991) stated that octopuses can be kept in small
    tanks as long as there is sufficient water exchange to maintain quality, several
    workers reported having problems with animals escaping or attempting to escape
    when kept in tanks that were too small. Just as we would not accept a gorilla kept in
    a small cage, we should not accept putting another intelligent animal like an octo pus into a small enclosure. Aside from the ethical considerations, many respondents felt this increases the risk of escapes.”

  • Sarrie

    It is so depressing to see how a wild, intelligent creature’s attempt to escape a small tank can be dismissed as “exploring his boundaries”. As expressed by someone else in another comment; if you put a human or companion animal in a small tank in an unknown environment, they would “explore their boundaries” as well. Animals taken into captivity live their lives without any real world events, mental stimulation, or choice of other members of their species to interact with – simply eating and making their way around the tiny space they are forced to live in and never wander anywhere else, and constantly being observed by noisy people.
    Please don’t go to aquariums.

  • Paul

    I have seen a few people keep them. They all had a sealed top. Some have tried to get out using the small holes in a tanks lid. WHY did they leave an open top it’s bound to happen again!!!

  • Donna Bossarge

    I agree that the proper thing to do for all wildlife would be to return them to their natural habitat. Unfortunately, in most cases “natural” habitat is being destroyed so quickly that few are going to survive when released. I have a Masters Degree in Environmental Science, and started a Volunteer Wildlife Rehab Program in 1977, and it still exists today. I grieve when I read about the condition of our planet, and what little is being done to save it. We are the asteroid and will be responsible for our on destruction.

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