Stomatopod Log Entry: Blue Ring Hot Sauce (October 29,2002)

Contributors: ASJ

Numerous stomatopods prey on cephalopods, among them the long-armed spearers who probably take a great deal of squid as part of their daily meals. However, even more amazing are some stomatopods that reportedly prey on the deadly Blue-ring octopuses.

The beautiful blue-ring octopuses are notorious for being extremely poisonous. They use a very potent toxin called TTX (tetradotoxin) to defend themselves and subdue prey.

According to Dr. Caldwell, their lab is studying stomatopods that prey on these very deadly critters. It does not seem as if the stomatopods are immune to the toxin. Instead, the mantis shrimps pulverize the octopus by pounding it until the TTX is dispersed. They then gingerly eat the remains, treating it, according to Dr. Caldwell, "like the octopus is covered with hot sauce".


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