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I Never Knew an Octopus Could Be So Adorable!

Alongside sloths, flapjack octopi (which go by the genus Opisthoteuthis) are my favorite animals. They are simply adorable, from their “ear flaps” (which are actually fins!) to their blobby, Pac Man ghost silhouettes. Sadly, these little ones are largely a mystery to scientists, as they live in the deepest parts of the ocean.

Luckily for me—erm, I mean science—an organization called the Nautilus Exploration Program plunges an Exploration Vessel (E/V) into the depths of the sea for the sake of discovery and research. In their quests, they’ve encountered a variety of fascinating creatures, including flapjack octopi (which they refer to as dumbo octopi). Here are some of the adorable little guys they crossed paths with in 2015. Even if you’re not into flapjack octopi (or not into them nearly as much as I am), you’ve got to admit the scientists’ banter is pretty entertaining!

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A. Stout received a Bachelor of Arts in Writing through Grand Valley State University, graduating Magna Cum Laude in 2015. In addition to being a passionate autism advocate, she is a member of various fandoms, a study abroad alumna, and an animal lover. She dreams of publishing novels and traveling all over the world someday.