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photo by Tiffany Boothe Beneath the waters of the Pacific Ocean lives a fearsome-looking creature - the Giant Pacific Octopus. Living an average three to five years in the wild, these invertebrates grow to an average of 110 pounds, but the record size was over 600 pounds with an arm span of 30 feet across! Usually reddish-brown in color, octopuses use special pigment cells in their skin to change colors and textures to enable them to blend in with their surroundings. These creatures are so intelligent they can learn how to open a closed jar with food inside it. (The hard part is getting the jar back). Octopuses hunt at night, feeding primarily on clams, shrimp and fish, but have been known to attack and eat sharks and birds, tearing the flesh with their sharp beaks. According to Tiffany Boothe at the Seaside Aquarium, the sex of an octopus can be determined by the third arm from the right eye. If there are no tentacles on the arm, it's a male. The Giant Pacific Octopus at the Seaside Aquarium is a male weighing 35-40 pounds and his reach, arm to arm, is about six feet. You can see this and other interesting creatures at the Seaside Aquarium, 200 N. Prom, (503) 738-6211.