Scientists discover adorable, ghostlike new species of octopus

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Octopus Emerges from Reef Camouflage

Scientists have discovered what may be a completely new species of octopus -- and it's absolutely adorable.

On February 27th, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration launched an underwater robot called the Okeanos Explorer to analyze the ocean floor near Neckar Island in the Hawaiian archipelago.

About 13,120 feet under the ocean's surface, the Explorer stumbled across a lone octopod hanging out on a flat piece of rock -- and it baffled scientists.

See photos from the expedition:

Cute new species of octopus discovered
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Scientists discover adorable, ghostlike new species of octopus
Photo: NOAA
Photo: NOAA
Photo: NOAA

"The appearance of this animal was unlike any published records and was the deepest observation ever for this type of cephalopod," scientist Michael Vecchione wrote in a blog post about the discovery. "This animal was particularly unusual because it lacked the pigment cells ... and it did not seem very muscular. This resulted in a ghostlike appearance."

This cute little kind of octopus doesn't have an official name yet, but Vecchione said one comment on social media suggested it be called Casper, like the friendly ghost.


Here's a video of the endearing little octopod doing its thing on the ocean floor. Its unique color and smooth, fluid movements might just mesmerize you.

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