Showing posts with label ocean. Show all posts
Showing posts with label ocean. Show all posts

International Octopus Day – October 8

Each year on October 8, people everywhere pay tribute to one of the most unique creatures that inhabit our planet – the octopus:

The date October 8 was chosen to celebrate the Octopus day because the octopus has eight arms. It is clear why the eighth day  in Octoberwas chosen. October was chosen because "Octo" means eight in Latin, and October was the eighth month in ancient Roman calendar. 

On the occasion of Octopus Day, here are some facts compiled to better acquaint you with this remarkable resident of the oceans.

Octopuses (not "octopi", which is considered grammatically incorrect) have three hearts.

Octopuses are among the earliest living creatures known to have occupied our planet. Fossils of their ancestors dating back to almost 300 million years ago have been discovered, implying that they preceded the earliest dinosaurs.

The size of a new born octopus is about the same as that of a flea.

Octopuses are very intelligent. Having about 500 million neurons distributed in their brains and arms, they can perform activities beyond instinctive reactions. They can plan, draw conclusions and solve problems.

Octopus wrestling competitions became a popular American West Coast sport in the nineteen-sixties. Such performances were carried out by human divers who grappled with octopuses in shallow waters in an attempt to drag them out to the shore.

People in Korea eat live octopuses.

Picture showing divers holding their  catch, a giant Pacific octopus that they had dragged out of thewater in the 1963 World Octopus Wrestling Championships

Laboratory experiments on vertebrates without using anesthesia is prohibited by law in many countries. This is especially true for octopuses, due to their high intelligence that is assumed to aggravate their agony.

 The word "octopus" implies that it has eight legs. Actually it has six arms and two legs.

The blue-ringed octopus is one of the most venomous marine animals in the world. Its bite can kill a human being.

There are about 300 known species of octopuses, distinguished by a variety of colors and sizes. The highest recorded weight of an octopus belonged to a giant pacific octopus that weighed about 272 kilos (about 600 lbs).

October 8 is also National Pirozhki Day

National Lighthouse Day - August 7

The lighthouse is a tower that spreads light that shines in the dark to protect and warn. It is meant to aid in navigation and sailing at sea, but the word lighthouse is also a metaphor for a person or friend who helps in difficult times and guides the way.

The history of the lighthouse

The earliest methods of helping seafarers reach the shore were lighting fires at the top of cliffs and hills.
The lighthouse began to be used for navigation, to mark shorelines and sandbars and to help ships reach the port safely. To distribute the light use a system of lamps and lenses.
The most famous lighthouse structure from ancient times was the Pharos of Alexandria, Egypt, although it collapsed during an earthquake hundreds of years later.
When aviation began to develop, in the 1920s and 1930s, lighthouses were built to signal aircraft and mark flight directions and airports for them. This was before they invented means of navigation like radio waves, radar and the like.
In the United States, for example, a line of lighthouses was stretched to its full width. Many such lighthouses were built in Europe and especially in England and were used until the Second World War.
Today there are modern navigation aids and the need for a lighthouse has been reduced. There are less than 1,500 lighthouses left in the world.
The modern lighthouses are unmanned. They have a rotating lens system that sends short flashes in all directions. These lights are similar to the lights emitted from beacons installed on tall buildings.

Although the use of the lighthouse has diminished, the lighthouse still has a cultural and nostalgic value. In honor of Lighthouse Day, go visit one or two lighthouses and learn about the great value they had in saving lives in the past and also about using them today.

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