Octopus Escapes Tank, Inking His Way To Freedom Through Aquarium Pipe Leading to Sea

Apparently nothing would soothe this octopus except the open seas.

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Three months ago, during routine maintenance work, Inky's tank at the National Aquarium of New Zealand was left slightly ajar.

Rob Yarrall, the manager of the aquarium, told Radio New Zealand a suction-cup trail indicated the octopus slipped across the floor to a six-inch drain pipe. The pipe fed directly into the ocean, and when staff checked it, Inky was long gone.

"He didn't even leave us a message," Yarrall joked to Radio New Zealand.

Yarrall explained that octopi are very malleable, and other than their beak that is stiff like a bird's, they can often make their body fit into any shape. Even though Inky's body is as large as a rugby ball, it is very possible that he slid easily through the 6-inch-wide drain pipe.

Inky the common octopus shared a tank with another octopus, but Yarrall said his former-roommate will likely not even notice Inky was gone, since they are solitary creatures that keep to themselves.

Yarrall also said that while staff members and visitors to the aquarium will miss Inky, they were happy to see him return to the ocean.


According to local reports, Inky was first moved into the aquarium when he was found tangled in a crayfish trap in 2014. Inky's body was scarred, and some of his limbs were injurred and shortenned.

The octopus became a local celebrity when the Napier City Council ran a contest to choose his new name. "Inky" was the clear winner.

Read: 6-Year-Old Girl Uses Slim Arms to Rescue 8 Ducklings Stuck in Drain Pipe

During his days at the aquarium, Stuff.co.nz reported that he was hand-fed fish three times a day, and kept entertained wtih games and toys.

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