Class Cephalopoda (greek/neo-latin for "head-footed") includes cuttlefishes, squids and octopuses. Most cephalopods lack external shell, their soft bodies are unprotected from predators. However, they have evolved into superb swimmers. Their tentacles became very effective tools to kill prey, manipulate objects and sense the environment. Octopi even use their tentacles to walk. Squids and cuttlefishes are supreme hunters. They feed on crustaceans and fish, caught with two very long special tentacles, that they shoot out with great speed and accuracy. The cephalopods' eye is similar to that of vertebrates' and is capable of forming real images.
Many cephalopods are masters of camouflage. Unlike stationary animals that use camouflage to mimic their more or less permanent environment (e.g. frogfishes), cephalopods are able to change their colour instantly according to changing surroundings while they swim. This ability is due to special pigment cells in their skin. By stretching and shrinking these cells in different parts of the body, they can blend into various backgrounds. They can also change their skin texture from rough to smooth. Another purpose of color change is to communicate with each other and different animals.

Blue Ringed Octopus
Hapalochlaena lunulata
Bobtail squid - Euprymna berryi Broadclub cuttlefish
Sepia latimanus
Cuttlefish - Sepia sp
Cuttlefish - Sepia sp Flamboyant cuttlefish
Metasepia pfefferi
Marginated octopus
Octopus cf. marginatus
Needle cuttlefish - Sepia aculeata
Cuttlefish - Sepia sp Pharaoh cuttlefish
Sepia pharaonis
Reef octopus - Octopus cyanea Pygmy squid - Idiosepius sp.
All images are Copyright © 2000-2005 Sergey Parinov. All rights reserved.
Unauthorized use of any materials from this site without permission is prohibited. Read copyright info.
Please contact webmaster@sergeyphoto.com for permission and licensing information or to buy prints.