Researcher Binyamin Hochner said, “Octopuses use unique locomotion strategies that are different from those found in other animals, this is most likely due to their soft molluscan body that led to the evolution of ‘strange’ morphology, enabling efficient locomotion control without a rigid skeleton.”
Octopus has eight arms that are very soft and flexible and does not have a rigid skeleton. The arms of the octopus act as though it has several joints and hence moves very smoothly.
Octopus can move in all direction and Hochner explains that this ability of the octopus is because of its interesting history of evolution from rigid immobile clams.
Their protective shell was lost during their evolution, and with the loss of the shell the octopus can move its body very easily, but it has also increased its vulnerability and the researchers believe that because of this vulnerability they have evolved with the ability to move much faster than other molluscs, said Guy Levy, a postdoctoral researcher of neurobiology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
Clams and snails move using their single foot which is slow but powerful. During evolution octopus has got long arms.
To understand how the octopus moves with soft arms they have looked at video showing octopus movements. To have a detailed look of the octopus they have analyzed the movements frame by frame, after the analysis they found that their movement is not dependent on the body orientation and their crawling has no rhythm to predict their next move.
They found that the octopus instead of pulling and pushing itself in one direction, it uses different arms in the direction it wants to move.
But the researchers have to study how the octopus controls its arms.
The findings of the study are published in Journal Current Biology.