Octopuses are such amazing creatures that they are sometimes compared to aliens. The fact is that the intelligence of these cephalopods of sea animals has no "terrestrial" analogues.
Take, for example, the central nervous system, where 2/3 of the neurons responsible for the functions of the tentacles are "scattered" throughout the body. At the same time, as scientists at the University of Washington have established, these neurons can make decisions without the participation of the brain.
The studies were carried out on the giant Pacific octopus Enteroctopus dofleini and the red octopus Octopus rubescens, which live in the North Pacific Ocean.
They have about 500 million neurons, of which 350 million are located along the tentacles, grouped in the so-called ganglia. They help to instantly process sensory information, allowing the octopus to respond quickly to external factors.
During the experiments, the scientists gave the clams various objects - cinder blocks, textured stones, Lego bricks and puzzle mazes with food inside. All episodes during the search for food were recorded with a video camera.
In particular, it was found that when the octopus suckers receive sensory and motor information from the environment, the neurons in the tentacle can process it and initiate the appropriate action. At the same time, the brain “does other things”.
This is in full agreement with the results of previous studies, which showed that the octopus tentacles not only function independently of the brain, but also continue to function after being separated from a dead animal.