How Many Hearts Does an Octopus Have

How Many Hearts Does an Octopus Have

How many hearts does an octopus have: Octopuses have three hearts, which is reason of having blue blood. Their two peripheral hearts pump blood through the gills, where it picks up oxygen. A central heart then circulates the oxygenated blood to the rest of the body to provide energy for organs and muscles.

Octopus are Cephalopods

Octopuses are cephalopods, which means “head foot”, describing their truncated anatomy. Cephalopods use a copper-based protein called haemocyanin, which is much larger and circulates in the blood plasma. Haemocyanin is less efficient at binding with oxygen than is haemoglobin. Octopuses compensate for this by having three hearts – two “branchial” hearts, which receive deoxygenated blood from around  the body and pump it through the gills, and one “systemic” heart, which takes that oxygen-rich blood, increases its pressure and then circulates it around the rest of the body.

Octopus Have Three Hearts? 

One clue that the three-heart system is needed to help power an octopus’s active lifestyle comes from the other cephalopods. The only member of the group not to share this anatomical anomaly is the nautilus, which is more sedentary and energy-efficient than the others. What’s more, octopuses may be particularly reliant on good circulation of oxygenated blood to power their extensive nervous system. Octopuses have nine brains: a central brain between their eyes and a mini one in each arm. This brain tissue is notoriously fuel intensive. 

Octopuses also need oxygen to power their muscles. Their preferred mode of locomotion is to crawl along the seabed. They can also swim at high speeds, propelled by jets of water, which they shoot out of a tube called a siphon. However, when they are swimming, the systemic heart does not beat, so they tire easily.