MBARI team finds 5 'Adorabilis' octopuses in Monterey Bay

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MBARI Team Finds 5 'Adorabilis' Octopuses in Monterey Bay

By: Lauren Seaver

MONTEREY, Calif. —Scientists found a species of octopus in the Monterey Bay that very little is known about. They're calling them "Adorabilis" because one characteristic is clear -- they are adorable.

MBARI scientists had been searching the Monterey Bay's deep ocean floor for weeks while attempting to collect the world's cutest octopus and learn more about it.

Past searches turned up no signs of "Adorabilis." But with luck on Wednesday, they collected five from the ocean.

You won't believe how cute these little guys are:

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The 'Adorabilis' octopus is too cute
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MBARI team finds 5 'Adorabilis' octopuses in Monterey Bay
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"I was going to be happy about one, so I'm five times as happy as I thought I was going to be," said Post Doctoral Researcher Stephanie Bush.

Bush and her MBARI team headed out on a boat Wednesday morning in search of the fist-sized orangish-pink octopuses.

"We went to a new site today, a little bit closer in. It was about 5 miles in," she said.

"We have a data archive where we can search and say, 'Where did we see this animal before?' And then we go, 'Let's go back to that place,'" she said.

Researchers launched a remote-operated vehicle to dive into the ocean's depths with a camera. And 400 meters deep, there they were.

The octopuses were carefully sucked up into the ROV and then transferred into coolers on the boat.

Once the boat made it back to Moss Landing harbor, researchers drove them to the Monterey Bay Aquarium.

"We have to make sure they're happy and healthy and feeding properly before the public can see them," Bush said. "It's so exciting that I get to bring that to the public, instead of keeping it for myself, or my lab group, or something."

As for the name of the newly discovered species: "One of the ideas we were toying with is Adorabilis. They are extremely adorable, and we got some really small ones today. The smaller they are, the cuter they are," Bush said.

The MBARI crew will head out again at the end of the month to find more octopuses.

The five octopuses will be on display at the Monterey Bay Aquarium beginning sometime next week.

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MBARI team finds 5 'Adorabilis' octopuses in Monterey Bay
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A common clownfish - Amphiprion percular - in an aquarium is photographed during a media preview of 'Coral Reef - Secret Cities of the Sea' exhibition at the Natural History museum in London, Wednesday, March, 25, 2015. The museum'€™s new show plunges into the underwater world, featuring a 'virtual dive' that provides a 180-degree view of five coral reefs controlled by a joystick, including one vista with a manta ray in Komodo Island, Indonesia. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
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