Octopuses Love High Definition Television (HDTV) - Renata Pronk
Scientists found that when showed high definition video of crabs and other food octopuses became more excited than when shown normal definition pictures, swimming vigorously towards the images when they appeared on screen.
It has been well documented that the octopus is an intelligent animal and scientists thought that showing them moving images of prey in a captive situation would allow them to study their behaviour. However it was only when videos were shown on HDTV that the cephalopods showed any interest at all.
The scientist leading the research is Ms Renata Pronk who believes that the study could give insights on the personalities of octopuses. She says that they don't have one personality but "episodic personalities".
Previously (2008) Ms Pronk reported that octopuses like HDTV but have no personality. Her new research now shows that the word gloomy could indeed apply to octopuses as they not only quickly change colour but mood too.
On why they only react to HDTV Ms Pronk said that the standard TV images were not up to the "relatively high standard of octopus eyesight."
It's not just humans who like watching high definition televisions, scientists say octopuses have a preference for them too.
The Macquarie University team found that the octopuses didn't have consistent behavior while watching the HDTV clips--one day a clip of a crab might elicit excitement, while the next the same octopus might not care at all. That means the gloomy octopus has an "episodic personality," or a personality that changes over time. So now, for the first time ever, scientists can figure out how and why octopus personality is so changeable--all thanks to our love of crisp, quality images.
In experiments evaluating how the creatures react to moving images, the animals responded far more vigorously to HDTV than standard definition TV.
It appears that standard definition moving images are not sufficiently "convincing" for the sophisticated cephalopods, say the scientists.