The Great Octopus Rescue of 2023

Mar 28, 2023

Here’s one for the feel good file: A Giant Pacific octopus stranded on a Washington state beach was saved by a little girl, park staff, and personnel from the Padilla Bay Reserve

“It was remarkable; an octopus can’t survive out of water for more than several minutes, it collapses their gills,” said Annie England, an artist and educator at the Reserve.

That’s why, when England got a call from the ranger at Mount Vernon’s Bay View State Park about an octopus stranded on the beach, she was not sure there was anything she could do. As she puts it, “I wasn’t anticipating finding such a healthy octopus.”

It was a little girl, who was visiting the beach with her family, who kept the octopus alive, according to England. “She was taking water with her little sand bucket, filling it up, and pouring it on top of the octopus,” she said.

England says this is the best thing you can do if you find an octopus out of the water. “We would never encourage the public to try to move an octopus or touch it,” England said. “Pour water on it while you wait for a local aquarium or organization that works with marine animals.”

England said finding an octopus alive out of the water is very rare. In fact, this is the first successful octopus rescue her team has ever done.

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ReservesPadilla Bay, WashingtonThe Great Octopus Rescue of 2023