Species: O. Argus
Distribution and Habitat
Octopus Argus is native to the subtropical to tropical waters of the southern parts of the subcontinent Argus and the surrounding islands. Its range extends from the coasts of Brulafi around the coasts of Martenyika and up the Eastern side of Argus back up to Enchanta. Its range also extends to around the islands of Mokov, San Javier, The aziran islands and many other small islands around Argus. It occurs in the intertidal zone and the shallow subtidal zone, down to depths of around 90 m (300 ft). It occurs over reefs and sandy seabeds, often hiding in crevices or under boulders and in empty mollusc shells.
This is a small to medium-sized octopus with a maximum length of about 20 cm (8 in). The mantle is globular with a smooth surface. The head is slightly narrower than the mantle, the eyes are prominent and are surrounded by small granulations. The mantle opening is wide with a long funnel. The neck is constricted and the eight arms are two-thirds to three-quarters of the length of the rest of the animal. The second pair of arms is the shortest and the fourth pair is the longest. The hectocotylus of the male is on the right third arm, and the male also has enlarged suckers.
This octopus feeds on crabs and small clams and is known to drill into gastropod shells to extract hermit crabs. The octopus is itself heavily preyed on by young sharks in the waters around Argus.
Breeding in this species takes place between autumn and spring. As with many other octopus species, the female selects a shelter and broods a batch of eggs. An invertebrate shell is usually chosen as a shelter; small individuals usually choose gastropod shells such as Zidona dufresnei, Odontocymbiola magellanica or Buccinanops cochlidium, clams such as Pitar rostratus or Amiantis purpurata or large barnacles in the genus Balanus. Medium-sized individuals favor shells of the oyster Ostrea puelchana, while the largest individuals create their own shelters from shell fragments and other materials. The oyster is the most favored shelter overall, with the majority of eggs being deposited inside the concave valve.