ADVERTISEMENT
  About the SA Blog Network

Posts Tagged "camouflage"

Dog Spies

Three Ways Dogs Fail At Halloween

8126534625_c2405e8833_q

Halloween is a peculiar holiday, especially for dogs. We two-legged beings all look different, and what’s with the constant doorbell-ringing? Weren’t you just here. Oh, I’m sorry. You’re Batman. He-Man was just here. My bad. I’ll keep barking. Dogs don’t exactly excel at Halloween, and here’s the lowdown on dogs, costumes, tricks, and treats. 1) [...]

Keep reading »
Observations

Quails Demonstrate Mastery of Camouflage to Protect Their Colorful Eggs

quail egg camouflage

A quail egg is like a protein-filled, free lunch, waiting on the ground to be spotted—and devoured—by a predator. But the Japanese quail (Coturnix japonica) seems to have mastered an impressive level of camouflage-manipulating behavior to keep her eggs off the menu. Female Japanese quails tend to lay distinctive eggs that are specific to each [...]

Keep reading »
Octopus Chronicles

8 Great Octopus Videos! [Video]

It’s Octopus Chronicles‘ 88th post! To celebrate, I’ve gone on an all-arms hunt through the deep crevasses of the internet to find eight of my favorite octopus videos. Some are old classics (such as Roger Hanlon‘s amazing, reverse-vanishing octopus) and others are new and stunning—and one even features an octopus walking (slithering?) on land. Really, [...]

Keep reading »
Octopus Chronicles

Octopus-Inspired Camouflage Flashes to Life in Smart Material

Octopuses and their cephalopod cousins are the undisputed masters of disguise. An octopus can change its color, texture and luminosity faster than you can say “camouflage.” So far our lowly human attempts at imitation have been quite crude. But a flashy new smart material might just be our closest step yet. The main tool the [...]

Keep reading »
Octopus Chronicles

Happy 8/8! Can You Spot These 8 Hiding Octopuses?

octopus

We must wait patiently two more months until the official International Octopus Day. But August 8th (8/8) is reason enough to celebrate these awesome, eight-armed creatures. But octopuses are the shy retiring type. With darn amazing camouflage. Even experienced underwater divers and scientists often have a difficult time spotting them (I sure did when I [...]

Keep reading »
Octopus Chronicles

Stunning Video Explains How Octopuses Out-Change Chameleons

octopus

Chameleons are often considered the quintessential color-changers. But the octopus outdoes them—using an entirely different mechanism to alter its appearance. “Octopuses are one of the best animals on the planet at camouflage—they change color, shape and texture,” explains James Wood, a marine biologist in a recent video for the site Macronesia. Chameleons depend on hormones to cue their color [...]

Keep reading »
Octopus Chronicles

Amazing Mimic Octopus Caught in Thailand [Video]

mimic octopus

The mimic octopus (Thaumoctopus mimicus) eluded formal description until 2005. Perhaps it was this banded cephalopod’s incredible impersonation abilities that kept it from science for so long. Its many guises and odd behaviors have been caught on video, but a new specimen, captured off the coast of Thailand, gives researches new evidence of the octopus’s [...]

Keep reading »
Octopus Chronicles

How the Octopus Creates Instant 3-D Camouflage on Its Skin

octopus skin camo

We’ve all seen the amazing video of the octopus that has entirely vanished against a plant, only to flash white and reveal itself as it swims away. The seamless color-matched camouflage is stunning. But we’ve been ignoring an equally as incredible aspect of their camo abilities: 3-D morphing. Yes, they can squeeze their bodies to [...]

Keep reading »
Octopus Chronicles

Happy Octopus Day! The 8 Best Octopus Discoveries

October 8 might be International Octopus Day, but October 31, 2013 is Octopus! day. My book Octopus! The Most Mysterious Creature In the Sea is publishing today. For the book I was able to travel the world, searching high and low for the most astounding octopus experiences. It was a nine-month whirlwind, spending vacation days [...]

Keep reading »
Octopus Chronicles

How Does That Crazy Camouflage Octopus Disappear? [Video]

camouflage disappearing octopus video

The vanishing octopus is back. This stunning cephalopod, caught on video by Roger Hanlon, a senior scientist at the Woods Hole Marine Biological Laboratory, has been making the rounds online again. The spectacular camouflaging act, made popular by ocean explorer David Gallo’s 2007 TED Talk, captures some of the octopus’s most impressive transformations. In the [...]

Keep reading »
Octopus Chronicles

Unusual Offshore Octopods: The See-Through “Glass” Octopus [Video]

glass octopus

Octopuses that live in the deep open ocean are difficult enough to find. But try locating a “glass” octopus, which is nearly transparent. Floating in the dim midwaters, this gelatinous octopod looks almost like a be-suckered jellyfish. Rather than camouflaging like most known octopus species, the Vitreledonella richardi has taken this alternative approach to hide [...]

Keep reading »
Octopus Chronicles

Deadly Octopus Flashes Bright Blue Warning with Super-Reflective Skin [Video]

blue-ringed octopus flashes blue warning muscles iridophores

The diminutive blue-ringed octopus (Hapalochlaena lunulata) looks like a sweet, possibly even fantastical creature. Often measuring less than 20 centimeters long and covered with dozens of bright blue rings, it spends most of its time hiding out in shells or rocks near the beach. But don’t be fooled—this little cephalopod is trouble. One small nip [...]

Keep reading »
The Thoughtful Animal

7 Things You Didn’t Know About Red Pandas

red panda tree

Here’s one thing you already knew: red pandas are adorable. While they’re not domesticated and therefore are probably not suitable as pets, some people keep them as pets anyway – especially in Nepal and India – and upload their adorable hijinks to the internet for the world to see. Here are seven other facts about [...]

Keep reading »
The Thoughtful Animal

You Can Run But You Can’t Hide (From Predators)

Camouflaged night jar

Probably the worst thing to happen to you, if you’re an animal playing the game of life, is to be eaten by some bigger beast. If you’ve already managed to successfully reproduce by then, as far as evolution is concerned, maybe it’s OK for you to shuffle off that mortal coil. Still, I imagine it’s [...]

Keep reading »

More from Scientific American

Scientific American Back To School

Back to School Sale!

12 Digital Issues + 4 Years of Archive Access just $19.99

Order Now >

X

Email this Article

X