This Video of a Tourist Unknowingly Holding Deadly Octopus Is Going Viral
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
This is an extreme example of why you should never touch wildlife.
Earlier this week, a video surfaced of a tourist in Australia holding an adorable — and utterly lethal — blue-ringed octopus. According to Gizmodo, the video was captioned with, “What a pretty octopus,” in Mandarin and initially posted to TikTok, before later appearing on Reddit (as viral videos so often do).
Here, Australian Redditors identified the venomous creature which, despite its diminutive size, contains enough venom to kill more than two dozen people. Yeah, “pretty.”
This tourist, frankly, is lucky to be alive. The golf ball-sized octopus has venom more powerful than cyanide, according to Ocean Conservancy, and delivers a tiny, sometimes painless bite. Because of this, victims often don’t even realize they’ve been bitten until symptoms set in (numbness, paralysis and, ultimately, respiratory failure). And there’s no anti-venom for one of these bites, as attacks are exceptionally rare. The blue-ringed octopus is shy and only known to bite if provoked or, well, picked up by tourists behaving badly.
This incident comes just weeks after an 11-year-old girl accidentally picked up a blue-ringed octopus hiding in a shell at a beach in Sydney, and another young girl collected two of the cephalopods near Perth, thinking they were shells. Luckily, they were both unharmed.
And earlier this month, more than a dozen Australian beaches were closed due to a so-called “jellyfish invasion” that resulted in 3,500 jellyfish stings in just one weekend.
Travelers should by no means be afraid of visiting Australia’s beaches. But it’s wise to exercise caution and be extremely aware of your surroundings, for both your safety and the welfare of the wildlife. Because just as tourists can be harmed during accidental animal encounters, it’s just as common (if not more so) for people to harm animals.
So, if you spot a pretty animal and think it should star in a viral video, please reconsider.
Featured image of a blue-ringed octopus via Shutterstock.
Welcome to The Points Guy!
Earn 90,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Offer ends 11/10/2021.
With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.
- Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer expires 11/10/2021.
- Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
- Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
- Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
- Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
- Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
- Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
- Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
- Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- $250 Annual Fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees