Young girl saves stranded octopus, officials say

Published: Mar. 23, 2023 at 3:52 PM EDT
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MOUNT VERNON, Wash. (KING) – A girl in Washington state helped rescue a giant Pacific octopus when it got stranded on the beach last week.

Swift action was taken by people with the Padilla Bay Reserve to get the giant octopus back into the water.

“They can’t survive out of water for more than several minutes,” Annie England, with the Padilla Bay Reserve, said. “It collapses their gills.”

England said she got a call from a ranger at Bay View State Park in Mount Vernon Wednesday about an octopus stranded on the beach.

“I wasn’t anticipating finding such an alive, healthy octopus,” she said.

England credits a little girl who was visiting the beach with her family for keeping the octopus alive.

“She was taking water with her little sand bucket and she was filling it up and she was pouring it on top of the octopus,” England said.

The actions taken by the little girl are the best course of action if an octopus out of water is ever encountered.

“We would never encourage the public to try to move an octopus or touch it … but definitely pouring water on it and calling a local aquarium or organization that … works with marine animals,” England said.

Finding a beached octopus isn’t uncommon, although England said this is the first octopus rescue she and her team has done.

“We had to be very conscientious of where we are putting our hands while we are moving the octopus,” she said. “Thankfully, we were able to get it into the bin and then we were able to drag it out.”

England said she’s relieved the mission was a success and hopes the octopus doesn’t experience something like this again.