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Nature & Environment

Scientists film octopus 'waking up from a nightmare'

By T.K. Randall
May 24, 2023 · Comment icon 12 comments

Do octopuses have nightmares ? Image Credit: Rockefeller University
The footage shows the snoozing cephalopod jolting violently awake as though reacting to a bad dream.
Despite their small size and alien-like tentacles, octopuses are remarkably brainy - as evidenced by studies that have recorded them manipulating objects and using tools to solve simple problems.

Some scientists even believe that these intriguing cephalopods, like many animal species, may actually experience dreams during certain stages of sleep... and if they can have dreams, then presumably they can also have nightmares, too.

Researchers at a laboratory in New York's Rockefeller University recently captured further evidence of this by filming an octopus waking up violently from sleep over and over again.
While the precise nature and explanation for this behavior has yet to be definitively determined, some believe that it represents evidence of the animal experiencing bad dreams.

"It was really bizarre, because it looked like he was in pain; it looked like he might have been suffering, for a moment," postdoctoral researcher Eric Angel Ramos told Live Science.

"And then he just got up like nothing had happened, and he resumed his day as normal."

Source: Live Science | Comments (12)

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #3 Posted by Antigonos 6 months ago
Or Dagon is calling him home.
Comment icon #4 Posted by Nicolette 6 months ago Dreaming about eating sharks
Comment icon #5 Posted by Antigonos 6 months ago
I bet this guy has eaten a few.
Comment icon #6 Posted by fred_mc 6 months ago
Interesting. As far as I understand, their brains have developed pretty independently from ours and yet there are similarities like this. It shows that dreams might be universal for beings with highly developed brains.
Comment icon #7 Posted by Bed of chaos 6 months ago
Bad dream or po'd he's still in aquarium. 
Comment icon #8 Posted by Occupational Hubris 6 months ago
The St. Augustine monster was confirme dto be the top of a sperm whales head. 
Comment icon #9 Posted by Orphalesion 6 months ago cute! Poor little guy got spooked, haha!
Comment icon #10 Posted by Antigonos 6 months ago
I know. I was so disappointed after having grown up with the story as a kid.
Comment icon #11 Posted by Alchopwn 6 months ago
So scared he soiled himself, lol.
Comment icon #12 Posted by Occupational Hubris 6 months ago
I mean, same. 

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