A Curious Octopus Investigates an Acoustic Guitar

A very curious octopus, who lives at Octolab (previously), very carefully inspected the unfamiliar intricacies of an acoustic guitar that was put into the tank. The clever cephalopod began a succinct investigation at the tuning pegs, then moved onto the curved body before attempting to climb into the soundhole. Unfortunately, the strings got in the way. Sadly, the octopus appeared to have a bit of stage fright, as there was no attempt to play the instrument.

…we were curious to see how the octopus will react to a musical instrument because most instruments are oddly shaped, made of diverse materials, and are a completely unfamiliar sight in the ocean. …Our octopus immediately showed signs of curiosity the moment we placed the guitar in the experiment tank and maintained a high level of curiosity throughout the experiment. …We were hoping to hear some tunes but this octopus, however curious, did not seem to understand the guitar’s function.

Octopus Checks Out Guitar

Octolab is a research facility that seeks to learn more about these incredible creatures by observing their behavior in a variety of situations. Each and every cephalopod in their care has been rescued from a fisherman’s catches and saved from an otherwise horrific fate.

At no point do we place any of our animals in harm’s way. Our priority is, always has been, and will always be the well-being and health of our octopuses. …All of the eight-armed friends who are part of the Octolab project were rescued from the catch of fishermen. Their fate would have been gruesome otherwise. Quite literally they would have been smashed on the rocks while still alive to “tenderize” them and then hung to dry in the sun before being sold to local seafood restaurants and markets.

Lori Dorn
Lori Dorn

Lori is a Laughing Squid Contributing Editor based in New York City who has been writing blog posts for over a decade. She also enjoys making jewelry, playing guitar, taking photos and mixing craft cocktails.