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Eight-armed painter to debut talent during Octopus Month

Posted: Friday, Oct 5th, 2012

Hatfield Marine Science Centerís octopus, Squirt, will create one painting a week during October, designated by the visitor center as Octopus Month. Drawings will occur each Saturday in October. (Courtesy photo by Jeffrey Basinger)

Evidence for octopus intelligence abounds - the leggy invertebrates can use tools, solve problems, and display remarkable curiosity. But now aquarists at the Hatfield Marine Science Center Visitor Center in Newport have found a way to allow Squirt, their resident octopus, to express his artistic creativity, as well.

Just in time for Octopus Month at the visitor center, the husbandry team has created a device that allows the octopus to manipulate a series of paintbrushes against a canvas outside of the tank. Aquarist Kristen Simmons, aquarium science student from Oregon Coast Community College, was the brains behind the mechanism.

For the complete article see the 10-05-2012 issue.

Click here to purchase an electronic version of the 10-05-2012 paper.

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