Steve McQueen has nothing on Inky’s great escape. The popular octopus from New Zealand’s National Aquarium managed to pull a Nemo and got back to the ocean. Octopuses are believed to be escape artists, but Inky really did some magic.
In the Great Escape, McQueen’s character regains his freedom by using a tunnel dug by the entire camp. Inky was smarter than that. The octopus waited for its handlers to drain its tank, noticed a small crack in the lid, and disappeared back into the ocean.
But the whole adventure was no piece of cake. The octopus had to case its surroundings, drag its slippery self on a floor that is well trodden, and finally, squeeze its whole body down a drainage pipe that has a 150 mm diameter. The pipe in question drains into the ocean.
While it sounds like an easy plan, even for a cephalopod, one should take into consideration the fact that the animal actually planned its escape. A marine animal stood in its enclosure, carefully observed its surroundings, and hatched an escape plan that ultimately worked.
Inky’s great escape is not only proof that octopuses are masters of squeezing themselves through tight enclosures, but also that the cephalopods are capable of thinking, planning.
Rob Yarrell, the manager of the Marine Parade section, said that this is the first time when he witnesses an escape. But now that Inky set a precedent, the personnel will be closely monitoring the second octopus that present at the time of Inky’s great escape.
Because if there is one thing that they learned from the Steve McQueen of octopuses is the fact that the cephalopods are intelligent enough to devise a working escape plan. That and they are also capable of fitting their entire body into a pipe that has a 150 mm diameter.
According to his caretaker, Inky was a reclusive animal. Even though octopuses are known to be shy, solitary animals, the captive specimens usually tend to interact with their fellow captive cephalopods. But Inky never showed much interest towards his aquarium mate.
Instead, the octopus was more keen on exploring its surroundings. It would spend a lot of time checking out the aquarium, and looking towards the visitors. But as it turned out, it wasn’t that interested in the tourists, but rather in the drainage pipe from across the room. His ultimate escape route.
Inky’s great escape will remain in the history of New Zealand’s National Aquarium.
Image source: Wikimedia