Monday, February 23, 2009

Southern Blue-ringed octopus

goal for the week 20hrs
still sanding


The Southern Blue-ringed octopus (Hapalochlaena maculosa) is a golf ball sized octopus from the south coast of Australia that is considered to be one of the world most venomous animals. Most of the time it is a tiny brown octopus, but displays it's bright blue rings when threatened.  The toxin it can deliver with it's painless bite is a powerful enough neurotoxin that it can kill an adult in minutes.  There is no known antidote, but individuals may be saved it artificial respiration is started before the cyanosis and hypotension develop. If the poisoned individual survives more then 24 hours then they will generally survive. The octopus's poison come from a symbiotic relationship with bacteria that live in it's saliva, it is also immune to the bacteria's chemical as it has evolved different sodium channel receptors then most animals. Fortunately they are relatively docile creatures and do not generally bother humans unless significantly harassed or stepped on.

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