Move over, Beatles — there's a real life octopus garden under the sea, and it's much more fascinating than a hokey pop song. The Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) shared this stunning footage of a gorgeous grove of roosting cephalopods, located about 80 miles west of Monterey, California, along the slopes of a deep-sea volcano. From Vice:
An estimated 20,000 Muusoctopus robustus octopuses, also known as pearl octopuses, occupy this 823-acre site. While the Octopus Garden is clearly a breeding ground and nursery, scientists were initially puzzled about why such an unprecedented number of octopuses had selected this particular spot to reproduce.
The researchers concluded that "localized deep-sea heat sources may be essential to octopuses and other warm-tolerant species" and emphasized that "most of these unique and often cryptic habitats remain undiscovered and unexplored," according to a study published on Wednesday in Science Advances.
Thousands of Octopuses Gather at This Mysterious Spot. Now, We Know Why. [Becky Ferreira / Vice]