Rare impersonator now spotted in Sharm

Last month, we brought you amazing news of a Mimic Octopus (Thaumoctupus Mimicus) spotted in Nuweiba. Now these creatures are rarely seen outside of their usual territory in Sulawesi, so for the Red Sea to report two sightings is pretty astounding, don't you think?

1106 mimic octopus sharm.jpg

Photo: Graham Pierce, Filmplus Videos & Photos

Just last week, Graham Pierce - Emperor Divers/Filmplus resident photographer in Sharm -photographed this little chap in Naama Bay whilst he was diving from the beach centre.

These amazing impersonators can grow up to 60cm and are usually brown/white in colour when they're feeling safe and secure. As soon as they feel threatened, they're able to mimic corals, sea snakes, flat fish, rays and even lionfish (Ah ha, is that the answer to the lionfish mystery? See the piece above re lionfish. Ed.)

Although a lot of creatures use mimicry as a defensive tool, this is the only creature known to assume the form of several different animals. As we said, they are very rare in this area but if you happen to come across one on your diving holiday, do please let us know. We can do our own marine investigation to see if they are becoming more widespread. Perhaps the stage in Sulawesi just isn't big enough any more for their changing repertoire.



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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Bryony published on December 2, 2006 2:58 PM.

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