Hapalochlaena maculosa


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Either of two species (Hapalochlaena maculosa, H lunulata) of small octopi which habitat tidal pools in the Pacific Ocean including the Great Barrier Reef. They have up to golf ball sized bodies and measure 8–10 cm when stretched from one tip of the tentacle to the other. They carry enough venom to kill 26 adult humans. When at rest, they are brown-pale yellow; when disturbed, they turn bright yellow and display blue rings around their tentacles. Blue-ringed octopi release tetrodotoxin (formerly known as maculotoxin, produced by bacteria in the host’s salivary glands), an inhibitor of action potential which blocks sodium channels, causing motor paralysis and respiratory arrest. The completeness of the motor paralysis is such that victims cannot signal that they cannot breathe.
Management There is no antidote; rescue breathing must begin immediately and must be maintained for as long as it takes for the toxin to work its way out of the victim’s body—up to 24 hours

Hapalochlaena maculosa

small, highly poisonous bane of surf beaches; called also blue-ringed octopus; has blue rings on the tentacles which show up when it is handled; injects a paralyzing toxin as it bites and causes deaths in humans and could, one supposes, do the same to animals. Called also Octopus maculatus.
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Additional sequences from other Octopus species (Octopus vulgaris, Octopus insularis, Octopus maya Voss & Solis 1966, Octopus mimus Gould 1852, and Octopus bimaculoides Pickford & McConnaughey 1949), as well as Hapalochlaena maculosa Hoper & Hochberg 1988, were obtained from GenBank for the comparative analysis of the divergence among sequences and the rooting of the phylogenetic groups (details are provided in Appendix A (Strugnell et al.
The blue-ringed octopuses Hapalochlaena maculosa and H lunulata - found around the coasts of Australia and parts of south-east Asia - both carry a neurotoxic venom so potent that their relatively painless bite can kill humans in a matter of minutes.