“He Wanted Me To Follow Him”: Diver’s Interaction With Curious Octopus Leads To Shrine Discovery (2024)

“He Wanted Me To Follow Him”: Diver’s Interaction With Curious Octopus Leads To Shrine Discovery (1)

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Scuba diver and photographer Jules Casey is no stranger to witnessing mesmerizing sights. Four years ago, she captured a pair of male and female seahorses united as the female transferred her eggs into the male’s pouch. (Seahorses and sea dragons are the only species in which the male gets pregnant and gives birth.)

And yet, this month, Jules found herself completely perplexed when, during one of her scuba dives, an octopus wrapped its long tentacle around her arm and began swimming away, almost as if indicating there was something he wanted to show her.

Highlights

  • An octopus led Aussie diver Jules Casey to an underwater shrine with a photo of a man.
  • The shrine, named Lorenz' Loop, was created as a tribute by a friend of the deceased man.
  • Jules had previously found parts of the shrine, including statues and metal pickets, during her dives.

“I don’t know if I found him or if he found me. He reached out his arm to hold my hand, and at that moment, it felt like he wanted me to follow him,” the Australian free diver explained.

After accompanying the huge Maori octopus for a few minutes, the two reached their destination: a secret shrine on the ocean floor.

Image credits: onebreathdiver

At the shrine, she found a framed photograph of a young man holding a white fluffy dog along with a plaque that read “Lorenz.”

The octopus hovered around the intriguing finding, indicating to Jules that he wanted her to focus her attention there.

For the content creator, seeing the man’s photo brought to mind other peculiar objects she had encountered around the area during past dives.

“Several weeks ago, I stumbled upon a few metal pickets in a line spaced 5 meters apart. Then, slowly, the beginnings of a trail, which included a few statues, appeared,” she shared.

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“Over the next few weeks, more metal pickets were added; then pipes. The trail looped around not far from the starting point.

“Then, one day, an octopus led me to a plaque, the final piece of this puzzle.”

The octopus stopped at a framed photo of a man holding a white dog, which was anchored to the ocean floor

Image credits: onebreathdiver

In addition to the statues secured to the ocean floor with metal pickets, Jules’ video documenting her unique underwater adventure also revealed a broad PVC pipe, which her octopus companion repurposed into a shelter.

“Octopuses like to hide in them,” the professional photographer said.

The artificial reef in Mornington Peninsula was named Lorenz’ Loop in honor of the man who inspired the tribute.

But little did Jules know that she’d end up crossing paths with the person who created the shrine.

Sharing her remarkable anecdote with a man at a local dive shop, Jules learned that her interlocutor had been behind the heartfelt tribute.

“I couldn’t believe it. But he showed me a little map he’d drawn of the structures in a loop for his friend, Lorenz, who’d passed away,” she told News Australia.

While she had never been on a scavenger hunt with an octopus before, Jules says that close encounters with this species are not rare, given the animals‘ nature.

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“They’re very curious, and I find more often it happens around their mating season. They’ll reach out and touch you. They do spend quite a bit of time exploring your camera.

“They’re amazing creatures. It’s so cool when one of them wants to come and explore you.”

Before the intriguing experience, Jules had encountered other objects from the shrine

Image credits: onebreathdiver

Maori Octopuses, also known as New Zealand octopuses, are one of the largest octopus species in the southern hemisphere. Their tentacles can reach three meters in length.

Their color ranges from orange-brown to dark purple, and they have numerous small iridescent white spots over their arms, dorsal arm crowns, and webbing.

On social media, Jules shared that she has reencountered the curious octopus following the discovery of the shrine.

“Since we last met, he has lost the tips off most of his arms and has a few white patches. I’m guessing that he’s been mating and is getting close to the end of his life.”

Although this species has a short lifespan—they breed once and live for 12-18 months—the females lay approximately 7,000 eggs and continue caring for them after hatching.

Female Maori octopuses make significant sacrifices for their offspring. During the two months the eggs take to hatch, their mother doesn’t eat to ensure they’re always supervised. Also, by not feeding, they produce less waste, contributing to higher water quality for the eggs.

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After the eggs hatch, the females are at risk of dying due to their weakened state from the time spent tending to them.

People reacted to the surprising interaction between Jules and the octopus

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“He Wanted Me To Follow Him”: Diver’s Interaction With Curious Octopus Leads To Shrine Discovery (2024)
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