What is an Octopus Mouth Called­­?

What does the Mouth of an Octopus consist of? What are the Parts of the Beak of an Octopus? Is Octopus Venom dangerous to Humans? How do Octopuses taste their Food?

Whenever we talk about octopuses, one thing always comes to mind, they spray ink. Some are confused and wonder whether they are fish or a species of animal. But other than that, do you know there are about 300 species of octopus in the oceans around the world? Most of them mostly prefer living in the deep oceans. While we are on the topic, do you remember what their mouth looks like and what is an octopus mouth called? Does octopus have beak? Today you will get to learn about these questions about octopuses. So, let’s get started!

1. What is an Octopus?

The soft-bodied mollusk with eight limbs is known as an octopus or octopuses (plural). They belong to the order Octopoda and their 300 species are grouped into the class Cephalopoda with cuttlefish, nautiloids, and squids. Their scientific name is Octopus Vulgaris. (See What are Baby Platypus Called?)

2. What does the Mouth of an Octopus consist of?

Photo by K. Mitch Hodge on Unsplash

Before you know what is an octopus mouth called, let’s go through the part of its mouth. The mouth of an octopus contains radula, salivary glands, and a beak made of chitin. Here is a brief description of the parts of the mouth of an octopus.

  • Radula: It is a muscular tongue-like organ that is spiked with multiple rows of tiny teeth. The main purpose of the radula is to extract the body of the prey from its shell case of snails, lobsters, etc. There is another important part below it, named salivary papilla. It is like a drill that is used to open the shell of the prey and inject powerful chemicals into it simultaneously.
  • Salivary glands: These glands secrete the necessary amount of saliva for easy swallowing of food. These glands are situated behind their beaks.
  • Beak: It is made of chitin, which is the composing material of all the exoskeletons of crustaceans. 

3. Does an Octopus have a Tongue?

Octopus has radula which is similar to the tongue. This tongue-like organ helps them in cutting and scrapping their prey mostly shellfish. But their tongue or tongue-like organ does not work like our tongue. Humans and most animals sense taste from their tongues, but this is not the case with the octopus. Now, what is an octopus mouth called? (Must See How Big is the Biggest Octopus?)

4. What is an Octopus Mouth called?

The mouth of an octopus is situated in the center of its tentacles. Their mouth has two-part beaks that are surrounded by muscular head appendages. The upper mandible (dorsal) fits into the lower mandible (ventral) and both work together just like a pair of scissors. So, what is an octopus mouth called? Well, mostly their mouth or beak is referred to as jaws or mandibles. (See What does a Kraken Look Like?)

5. Does Octopus have Beak?

Yes, like every other cephalopod, octopuses have beaks. It is hard and sharp just like the beaks of Aves (birds). They have a two-part beak which is fixed within their jaws within a strong muscle tissue known as buccal mass. Their beak is often compared to the beak of a parrot as it is strong and pointed. (See What are Behavioral Adaptation of Animals?)

6. What are the Parts of the Beak of an Octopus?

Photo by Serena Repice Lentini on Unsplash

Their beaks may look simple, but it is their lethal weapon to hunt. Both the upper and lower beaks of the octopus are made up of two layers. Here is a brief description of the parts of their beak. 

  • Wall: It is the inner layer of the beaks.
  • Hood: This is the outer layer of the beaks.
  • Bridge and Shoulder: These two components are responsible for holding the two layers (wall and hood) together in place.

7. How do Octopuses Eat?

It is informative to know how octopuses eat apart from discussing what is an octopus mouth called. Octopuses have mouths through which they intake their food. They pounce on their prey and web their arms around it. They prefer hunting at night. However, before eating they check whether the food is toxic or not and then insert their toxic venom into their prey through their beaks. The venom is not to kill the prey but to paralyze it. (See Can a Megalodon Eat a Blue Whale?)

8. Is Octopus Venom dangerous to Humans?

Yes, basically, every octopus has venom that they use to paralyze its prey, and it can work on humans as well. Yes, their venom is dangerous to humans because it can paralyze humans. However, according to researchers, there is only one octopus specie that is deadly to humans. It is a blue-ringed octopus. They have a painless bite, but soon the person will feel numb around the mouth, tongue, face, and neck followed by difficulty in breathing. (See Do All Jellyfish sting?)

9. What is the Diet of Octopuses?

Photo by Vlad Tchompalov on Unsplash

This 8-limbed sea creature is a carnivore and its bottom-dwelling species prefers to eat the following:

  • Clams
  • Crabs
  • Lobsters
  • Mollusks
  • Polychaete worms
  • Shrimps

The open ocean octopuses like Mimis octopus and other common octopuses prefer to eat the following things:

  • Chambered nautilus
  • Cuttlefish
  • Fish
  • Other octopuses
  • Prawns
  • Squids

10. How do Octopuses taste their Food?

You learned what is an octopus mouth called, now are you curious about their tongue? Since their tongue lacks taste buds, they cannot taste with it. Taste and touch receptors are present in their limbs or tentacles. Their arms are lined with suckers that contain sensory cells for the sense of touch and taste. This helps them in determining whether an animal is safe or toxic to eat before they can bring it to their mouth. (See What is The Relationship between Water Clarity and Urchin Survival?)

11. How do Octopuses chew their food?

Photo by Dustin Humes on Unsplash

Octopuses do not have actual teeth for chewing and grinding their food. But this does not stop them from being a carnivore because their beak helps them in chewing, breaking, and opening their prey. It helps them to bite too. (See 17 Types of Sea Anemone)

12. Do Octopuses have Bones?

Octopuses are invertebrates, which means they do not have bones and lack the vertebral column, spine, and all other bones. The only hard body part that they have is their beak. It is the only indigestible part of their body. Also, check out How Big Is the Biggest Whale?

13. Which Animal eats Octopuses?

Food is always regulating itself, therefore, every predator has a higher level of predator that helps in keeping the balance between different levels of the food chain. Similarly, there are animals that feed on octopuses, including humans. Here is the list of animals that possibly eat octopuses.

  • Big fishes
  • Moray Eels
  • Seabirds
  • Sea otters
  • Seals
  • Sperm whales
  • Sharks

So, today you get to know what is an octopus mouth called. Also, the answer to does octopus have beaks turned out to be a yes because they do have beaks. But do you remember does an octopus have a tongue? Well, it is time to share this tricky information with your friends and family, and do not forget to share your experience of encountering an octopus with us. (See What are the Adaptations of Fish?)

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