Are you fascinated by the undersea environment and curious about the various forms of octopus and other aquatic creatures?

Then you are just where you should be. You would lose if you ever played a game of hiding and seek with an octopus. 

Octopus are extremely intelligent and have the title of the smartest invertebrates in the world. Camouflage is one of the octopuses’ remarkable abilities that helps them change the color and texture to go with their surroundings, which keeps them safe from predators.

These creatures vary in features, colors, size, patterns, and colors; from the smallest, you can find an octopus the size of a pea to the size of a vehicle.

Around 300 different species of octopus can be found at present. To escape being devoured, spray ink as a smokescreen is the defense mechanism of octopus.

The octopus has outlived dinosaurs and dates back 296 million years. Can these species get any more amusing! 

There is a massive range of different species of octopuses that each have their unique skills and characteristics. We have listed some of the ten particular types of octopus species.

Table of Contents

1. Mimic octopus (Thaumoctopus mimics) 

Amazing Mimic octopus. Copyright: Getty Images TV

Mimic octopus has taken camouflage to a whole another level. As its name implies, it can mimic almost all animals underwater.

They mimic to defend themselves from any predators. The researchers are still researching how these animals are doing the mimic. 

The drivers have reported that they have seen mimic octopus copy species like giant crabs, seahorses, jellyfish, giant crabs, and more.

In 1998 on the coast of Sulawesi, Indonesia, a mimic was discovered. The mimic octopus lives on the shallow sandy bottoms near river mouths where there are a lot of predators.

Females die as soon as their infants are born, and the baby should survive on its own after it hatches.

2. California Two-Spot (Bimac Octopus)

California Two-Spot
California Two-Spot (source)

California Two-Spot is one of the most friendly octopus species, which might also become pets. However, octopus sometimes releases ink when trying to get away, enabling them to get away from the predators.

It can be easily identified as the color of blue pops on each side of its head. They are said to be no harm to humans and are friendly by nature. 

This octopus doesn’t mind the company of others. This octopus is quite similar to other average octopus species, but its marking separates it from others. They can hunt, hide, mate, and adapt by controlling their pigment.

Two-Spot Octopus choose to mate when the water temperatures are warmer, although they can breed any time during the year.

Two-Spot octopus mostly lives in Mexico, certain areas of Japan, and Africa as they usually stay in the water between 65 and 72 degrees Fahrenheit.

3. North Pacific Giant (Enteroctopus dofleini)

giant octopus - octopus species
Giant Pacific Octopus (source)

When we are talking about octopuses, there is absolutely no way we don’t discuss the biggest of them, all North Pacific Giant.

Depending on their environment and other factors, they measure up to 15 feet and weigh 150 pounds. But some researchers say they are even more prominent.

The camouflage ability of this octopus is also quite good as their size won’t let them fit into small areas or run quickly. They use ink that tends to be darker and more noticeable in color and defend themselves from predators.

The center of their body is spherical; their arms contain suction-like devices, which allows them to move through the water much more simply and fast.

4. Dumbo Octopus (Grimpoteuthis)

 Dumbo Octopus
Dumbo Octopus (source)

Dumbo, doesn’t the name sound familiar? If you haven’t figured it out already, remember the famous Disney elephant that could fly. They are a lot more than just their cute little bodies.

The dumbo octopus doesn’t have an ink sac, unlike most octopuses. They are found to live in the depths of 400-4,800 meters below the ocean surface, where they don’t have many predators. While most are relatively small, some can reach six feet.

These octopuses have been found in New Zealand, Australia, the Philippines, and New Guinea. As they live in the ocean’s deepest depths, many things about them are still under research.  

5. Blue Ringed Octopus (Hapalochlaena maculosa)

Blue ring - octopus species
Blue ring octopus spotted in Adelaide beach (source)

As the name implies, Blue Ringed Octopus is known for its bright blue rings that appear when they sense danger. Blue Ringed octopuses are indeed not the most friendly species.

Although the Blue Ringed Octopus is tiny, its venom is potent, which can cause a lot of damage to human beings. Its poison known as Tetrodotoxin can kill approximately 26 full-grown humans in just a few minutes.

They have large heads, thick arms; they move much more slowly than other types of octopuses. Although they are not fast swimmers, they can lie completely flat and disappear into the scenery.

They are also very aggressive. The blue-ringed octopus bites prey and releases the venom, paralyzing prey before consuming.

If you want to spot them you can dive in Anilao, Puerto Galera in Luzon, Dauin, Leyte, Bohol and Cebu in the Visayas. These octopuses mostly live in shallow tidal pools and narrow reefs. 

The male dies after reproduction, whereas the female dies because of starvation when the eggs hatch as they don’t eat to guard their egg. 

6. Caribbean Reef Octopus (Octopus Briareus)

Caribbean Reef Octopus (Octopus Briareus)
Caribbean Reef Octopus (Octopus Briareus) – Source

A dark ring around the eye can quickly identify this gorgeous creature. They are often mistaken for the Common Octopus.

It is a little challenging to locate Caribbean Reef Octopus as the texture and color of this octopus changes according to its ages, and they can camouflage!

Caribbean Reef Octopus can be found in the Atlantic Ocean, the Caribbean area, and the Bahamas. They are mostly found eating crustaceans, and they spend most of their nights looking for food. 

The Caribbean Reef Octopus is seen glowing at night due to its variety of fluorescent colors, such as blue-green, purple, brown, and white, which gives a breathtaking view. The Caribbean Reef Octopus is said to have a short life. 

The Caribbean Reef Octopus outstretches its body and tentacles to cover its prey, in which the target is trapped. Further, it bites its prey, releasing venom that paralyzes it, restricting it from escaping.

7. Common Octopus (Octopus Vulgaris)

Common - octopus species
Common Brown octopus camouflage in the Caribbean (source)

One of the species of octopus that you likely have seen will be the common octopus, whether it be tv or youtube documentaries. This octopus varies a lot in size. 

Common octopuses have large heads and big eyes that look unusual for their bodies. One of the most researched octopuses is the common octopus. They are exceptionally good at hiding. 

They are found mainly eating crustaceans, including crayfish, crabs, and mollusks. They can only survive for one or two years.

Common octopuses known as the most intelligent invertebrates are found in the tropical and temperate waters of the oceans. One of the defensive mechanisms of the common octopus is camouflage. 

They can almost instantaneously match their surroundings’ colors, patterns, and textures, and the Predators swim without detecting it. They scale from 12 to 36 inches in length and weigh anywhere between seven and 20 pounds.

8. East Pacific Red Octopus (Octopus rubescens)

East Pacific red octopus
East Pacific red octopus (source)

The fully grown East Pacific Red octopus weighs only five ounces. They are tiny; their body is three times smaller than the length of their arms. It’s hard to differentiate males and females of the species when you look at them.

They really can blend into their surroundings which is possible due to pigment changing abilities in their body. They can be right in front of you most of the time, but you won’t even realize you are staring at an octopus.

They are mostly found on the West Coast, reaching up to Alaska. They are found to live on the shallow side of the water. They don’t go deeper than 300 feet, but they can go deeper than that if they need to find food. 

Compared to other octopuses, they are less picky in their food; they primarily eat crabs, scallops, clams, and other fish.

They have a strange habit of taking hold of their food and going back to their “home” to consume it. Researchers claim that the East Pacific Red Octopus is very intelligent with a great memory.

9. Seven-Arm (Haliphron Atlanticus)

Seven-arm octopus as a predator. Copyright: MBARI

Seven-Arm Octopus is different from other octopus species as they only have seven visible arms. They have eight arms, but one is not so visible as it is located below the eyes and is like a sac.

It was only discovered in 2002 around the area of New Zealand. They consume large amounts of food; they hunt their prey at night without any problem because of their exceptional eyesight. They are not a very particular species. 

They are brilliant and can adapt quickly in almost any environment; they can hide in very narrow spots due to their flexibility.

The females mostly die before their egg is even hatched due to their exhaustion in laying eggs. The young ones swim to find food on their own. They are unsafe, though, and that is why the mortality rate is exceptionally high at this stage.

10. Atlantic Pygmy (Octopus Joubini)

Atlantic Pygmy (Octopus Joubini)
Atlantic Pygmy (Octopus Joubini) – Source

As the name implies, these octopuses are tiny, even more petite than six inches. They don’t have a rigid internal structure that allows them to squeeze through small holes and fit in any space. They even hide in bottles and cans.

Mostly they are whitish with brown spots. They are primarily found in the Cayman Islands. They are knowledgeable and jolly. They have a lot of interaction with humans as they swim in items found at the bottom of the sea.


We can see how unique and exciting octopuses are, as well as how octopuses and other sea animals eat and die as a result of the plastic we dump into the water.

So, we should all try to avoid using plastic as much as possible if we want rare sea creatures to be seen by the upcoming generation.

(Last Updated on November 26, 2021 by Sadrish Dabadi)

Rishu Shakya, a bachelor’s degree graduate in Business Information Management, holds an extraordinary empathy towards mother nature and her ecosystem. She has always been captivated by green Earth and its charm. She regards spreading awareness about clean energy and sustainable development as her passion as well as responsibility. She believes her compassion about the Earth and human relationships will undoubtedly assist our planet to be a better place.