HDTV Popular With Octopuses, Jury Still Out On Squid

Marine biologists studying octopi have begun using HDTV to simulate prey and predators, relying on the sharp onscreen images to trick the animals into responding as if they’re actually under attack or on the hunt (when basketball is on, they reach for breaded shrimp and Hebrew National franks).

According to the Journal of Experimental Biology, HDTV allows researchers to study how octopuses interact with each other and other species, in ways once possible only in the deep ocean.

“This new video playback technique is great news for researchers, because they can use it to study many different aspects of octopus behavior that can’t otherwise be discerned using traditional techniques,” lead author Renata Pronk, a marine at Macquarie University in Australia, told LiveScience. …

“This is the first time such a strong, appropriate response has been shown from a cephalopod to video,” said Pronk. “The octopuses’ reactions were the same as the way they react to these objects out in the ocean. For instance, when an octopus sees a crab out in the ocean, they generally try to sneak up or jet over to it and envelope it under their arms. This is how the octopuses reacted to the video crab.”

We’re waiting to see how they respond when an Xbox is hooked up to the set. Those eight arms should make for some major fragging.

Octopuses prefer HDTV [LiveScience- msnbc.com]