Have you ever asked yourself, “Do Octopus have bones?” If you are wondering if Octopuses have bones, you are in the right place.
Do you know what an Octopus looks like? I’m sure you know what an Octopus is before you landed on this page. However, Octopuses are wonderful sea creatures, and their close relatives (such as cuttlefish, nautiluses, squids, etc.) are strange creatures that can be found in seas and oceans.
They are known for their eight long arms. Long arms aside, they are covered with several scores of suction cups that they use to pick things and also for moving around.
Octopuses have an amazing body structure that allows them to do incredible things. They can perform lots of magic that surpasses human understanding or logic with their God-bestowed physical abilities. Some of those abilities and facts are discussed in this article.
Even though they can do a lot, many people who haven’t contacted an octopus still want to know if octopuses have bones.
So, Do Octopus Have Bones? In this informative article, you will find out whether octopuses have bones or not. Not only that, other octopus-related questions will be answered.
So, I will implore you to keep reading on as you take a mind-blowing mental journey into the anatomical structure of one of the most intelligent creatures in the oceans — the Octopus.
Do Octopus Have Bones?
If you take a look at the world around you, you will observe that most of the animals around you are vertebrates, including humans.
A vertebrate is an animal that possesses a series of bones that encloses and protects the spinal cord and often runs down the middle of the back. In other words, a vertebrate is an animal that has a backbone. On the other hand, an invertebrate is an animal without a backbone. It’s as simple as that!
However, not all animals you see actually belong to the class of vertebrates. Insects and mollusks belong to the invertebrate class, and as a result, they have no backbones. According to Wiktionary, a mollusk is a soft-bodied invertebrate of the Phylum Mollusca, typically with a hard shell of one or more pieces.
By nature, we have several different types of invertebrates, such as insects, worms, jellyfish, snails, crabs, sea sponges, etc. Also, animals found in the Cephalopoda class (such as cuttlefish, nautiluses, squids, and octopuses) are also invertebrates.
Octopuses are good examples of mollusks. So, do Octopus have bones? The answer is NO; octopuses do not have bones. Since it is an invertebrate, therefore they don’t have bones in their bodies. The only stiff or hard part in the Octopus’s body is the little beak they use to tearing their prey into pieces and eat them.
Octopuses are 8-armed creatures that live on the ocean floor; they are regarded as the most intelligent invertebrates.
Why Octopus Have No Bones?
Just as we’ve said in a section above, octopuses have no bones because they are invertebrates. They don’t possess any spinal column or bones.
The first ancestors of Octopuses came from a lineage of mollusks about 500 million years ago, but back then, just like the very present, mollusks were invertebrate creatures.
Their evolution took place in the oceans, and they never relied on any rigid or hard structure to develop new anatomical properties. This explains why even the arms of an octopus do not require any support structure to function.
Furthermore, since octopuses lack any bones or spinal support, it actually gives them an advantage. Unlike humans, not having bones will be a big disadvantage for us; Any patient with permanent damage to the spinal column can never walk again.
The octopuses have adapted to a life without bones. More so, not having bones gives them the ability to squeeze into tiny spaces that would be near to impossible if they had a skeletal structure.
Did Octopus Ever Had Bones?
Evolution is a continuous part of life. Every living organism undergoes the process of evolution, even if it is not apparent. Like humans, octopuses also went through series of evolution over the years. According to a research study which was published in the Journal Proceedings of the Royal Society, it was established with a statement that the earliest ancestors of octopuses were very much dissimilar to the octopuses we see today.
The study made it clear that octopuses were not the squishy creatures we know them to be. Rather, they used to have a hard-shell exoskeleton that protected them like the shell of a snail.
There is a belief that the early variants or octopuses lost their protective shells during the Jurassic and Cretaceous pre-historic era. This development made them become squishy creatures and also made them capable of becoming more agile. A more agile body helps them to evade potential threats.
How Do Octopuses Move Without Bones?
For most animals, bones are essential in the anatomical structure as they provide rigid support for their bodies, which helps them move around. In this context, humans are animals; No spinal column, no movement. So, how do octopuses move around with a bone support system?
One feature that octopuses have with them is that their natural habitat is in the ocean (water), where they can use their buoyancy to their advantage. Although, the arms of an octopus are equipped with muscles that allow them to move and swim. The muscles also help their arms to manipulate objects.
The muscles in an octopus’s arms are almost the same as the muscles in the human tongues, and elephant trunks. The human tongues do not have any bones, yet they are still quite strong to move and stretch with little or no effort. That’s how it works for an octopus too.
How Do Octopuses Keep Their Shape Without Bones?
I believe you might have wondered about how an octopus is able to keep its shape, after all -No Bones.
From our discussions above, you know that a skeletal structure is meant to make the body of an organism rigid while also helping to preserve its body shape. So, how do Octopus maintain their body shapes when they don’t have bones or spinal support?
Although octopuses don’t have any bones in their bodies, they have other physical or anatomical properties that help keep a normal body shape.
For example, octopuses have well-developed and robust muscle tissues, which helps their locomotion. The muscles provide the octopuses with the framework for their body shapes.
The skin is another body organ that provides an octopus with a solid structure to maintain its body shape.
How Do Their Muscles Work Without A Skeletal Structure?
Despite not having a skeletal system, nature is kind enough to make these squishy creatures more powerful than we can imagine. The body of an octopus contains a 3-dimensional layer of muscle fibers. These fibers rely on a support system known as the muscular hydrostat.
The working principle or so the muscular hydrostatic system hinges that water cannot be compressed at any physiological pressure. The implication of this is that; whenever pressure is applied on any part of the muscular hydrostatic system, the water cavity inside opposes the compression, thereby causing a movement on the other end.
A typical muscular hydrostat mainly consists of muscle tissues that are made out of water. As a result, the muscle fibers are incomprehensible.
The compression or muscle fibers ignite a resistant force that creates a movement on the other end. These movements are well coordinated, that several studies are going on presently to figure out how it is done.
What Are The Advantages Of Not Having Bones For Octopuses?
There are few advantages that an octopus get from their inability to have bones which are listed as follows
1. Malleability: It allows the Octopus to squeeze into very tight openings. Not having bones offers them a means of protection from predators. It also helps them to hunt for prey in the most difficult locations.
2. Octopuses can squeeze through any tiny hole. They are known recently for their ability to escape from aquariums due to their power to squeeze through tiny openings. Nature is truly beautiful!
Do Octopus Need Bones?
One would wonder if these creatures need bones. Some imaginations will make you wonder what these sea animals can do if they had bones. Let me throw the question to you, “do you think octopuses need bones?”
For me, it’s a NO. Every one of us can see that octopuses have done well without having bones for a span of more than 500 million years. Although humans can’t imagine a life without having bones or skeleton, it is effortless for these stunning creatures.
Conclusion – Do Octopus Have Bones?
One would agree with me that octopuses deserve to be at the top of the list, in the hall of fame for weird and unique animals in the world. A surprising feature is that they are firm without bones and can also regenerate new arms in the event of a severed limb – That’s amazing!
Not just the mystery; having no bones made it difficult for humanity to understand octopuses’ evolution. Octopuses and their relatives are incredible, and they attract and intrigue many of us. We hope your question “Do Octopus Have Bones” has been answered and if you like our article, kindly help us share it.