Northwest Voices | Letters to the Editor
Seattle Aquarium octopus week
Octopuses in danger
In the Feb. 15 Seattle Times weekend section, a delightful article was written about the upcoming octopus week at the Seattle Aquarium [“Octopus couple on display before release for mating,” WeekendPlus].
The writer, however, neglected to mention the life or death situation that currently exists for these amazing, highly intelligent creatures.
A recent report from the Department of Fish and Wildlife stated that these giant octopuses may be “harvested” (their term) by scuba divers plucking them from their caves at a legal rate of one a day per person.
When I was watching Rain and Squirt in their tank performing by changing color, a docent told me they are the only non-mammal the aquarium gives names to, since they are so smart.
Currently, work is under way by the Department Fish and Wildlife to form a panel to change this dire situation.
When these two octopuses are returned to the wild, which will be soon, I hope and pray they are not “harvested” and end up on someone’s backyard barbecue. Please visit them during octopus week while they are safe — for now.
--Karoline Morrison, Seattle