Supermoon Tide Washes Bemused Octopus Into Miami Parking Garage


Robin Andrews

Science & Policy Writer

The unfortunate octopus in question. Richard Conlin via Facebook

The recent record-breaking “supermoon” was a rather glorious or somewhat overrated celestial event, depending on who you ask.

If you happened to be an octopus, however, it was somewhat apocalyptical. As reported by the Miami Herald, one very unfortunate cephalopod was forced up out of a storm drain and into a parking garage during a king tide.


King tides happen whenever the Moon, Earth, and Sun align, during the point where the Moon is at its closest possible point to the Earth in its elliptical orbit. However, there is a chance that this particular king tide was amplified by the slightly closer than average lunar companion.

Although a nefarious prankster could have just cruelly placed the octopus onto the ground in order to create a viral photographic opportunity, the Herald claims that it’s definitely possible for it to have washed up naturally.

Forget the supermoon, though – this octopus’ melancholy debut on the car park’s concrete floor is a more ominous feature of a far more threatening phenomenon.


National Geographic notes that with rising sea levels, octopuses are increasingly found in pipes that are becoming rapidly submerged. So if anything, this peculiar appearance of an eight-legged creature serves as a reminder that Miami is experiencing an unprecedented encroachment of the waves as of late.


A recent study revealed that, at current rates of climate change, 2.5 million people living in the coastal sections of Miami will be forced to move by 2100. By that point, it will be far more common to see octopuses in submerged parking garages than it will be to see humans staring at unexpected aquatic visitors.

If you’re wondering what happened to the poor octopus, then fret not, dear readers. According to a Facebook post by Richard Conlin, one of those who assiduously documented its unusual passage onto land, it survived.

“Security from the building filled a bucket with seawater, rescued it and placed it back in the bay,” he said. “I spoke to them this morning and they said they believe it got away safely.”

I think we can all agree that this story has been a rollercoaster of emotions.


[H/T: Miami Herald]


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