See Rare Footage of the Elusive, Ethereal Dumbo Octopus

See Rare Footage of the Elusive, Ethereal Dumbo Octopus

A team of researchers spotted the creature thousands of feet below sea level with the help of a remotely operated vehicle

ByBrigit Katz

smithsonian.com

Deep in the Pacific Ocean, some 80 miles off the coast of Monterey, California, lies a sprawling underwater mountain habitat that teems with vibrant coral forests, sponge fields and elusive creatures that dwell near the sea floor. While using a remotely operated vehicle to explore the Davidson Seamount, as the area is known, a team of researchers recently caught sight of one such creature: the rarely-seen dumbo octopus.

As Annie Roth reports for National Geographic, scientists on board the E/V Nautilus research vessel had launched a dive into an unexplored reef near the seamount when the ethereal white octopus floated into view. The mission is being live-streamed, and footage of the sighting also captured the researchers ooh-ing and ahh-ing over the animal…