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The Eight Limbed Aliens: Octopuses Are Out There

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.

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Greetings Earthling

Ok, so this is really entirely for entertainment, and you should check out the excellent all-octopus-all-the-time blog Octopus Chronicles right here at Scientific American for genuine insight, but I couldn’t resist posting this video that seems to be on its way to viral fame. Apparently octopuses can, and do, make quite extended forays into that near vacuum we call dry land. Watching this (and the other one below) I cannot help but think that the same scene could be playing out on a planet around another star somewhere out in the Milky Way galaxy, or even further afield. Opposable thumbs are so last-eon, prehensile tentacles are the way to go.

And this one demonstrating that old hunter-gatherer instinct that results in planetary domination…

Caleb A. Scharf About the Author: Caleb Scharf is the director of Columbia University's multidisciplinary Astrobiology Center. He has worked in the fields of observational cosmology, X-ray astronomy, and more recently exoplanetary science. His latest book is 'Gravity's Engines: How Bubble-Blowing Black Holes Rule Galaxies, Stars, and Life in the Cosmos', and he is working on 'The Copernicus Complex' (both from Scientific American / Farrar, Straus and Giroux.) Follow on Twitter @caleb_scharf.

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.

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