I've been reading Deep-Ocean Journeys, by Cindy Lee Van Dover, which chronicles some of the adventures she had as an Alvin pilot. In the book she mentions that, She also states that vent fluid emananting from Black Smokers is laden with My first thought after reading this was "What about the octopus that live there?" Cephalopods as a whole are supposed to be exceptionally susceptible to copper. I knew that cephs weren't overly abundant around these vents, but I was sure that there was some species that colonized them. After little searching, I found my creature: Vulcanoctopus hydrothermalis. These creatures have been found in groups up to 12 on vents (Voight 2005). They are among the top predators of vent communities. My question is this, how can a cephalopod that supposedly cannot tolerate copper live in such an environment? The vents described in Voight (2005) were no longer active, and therefore were not contributing any copper on an immediate basis. Were these vents just not active long enough to build up accretions of copper? Have V. hydrothermalis only ever been found on short-lived, extinct vents? Curiously, Voight (2005) does mention that V. hydrothermalis is clearly adapted to vent communities as it can withstand significant sulphide exposure. Is it possible for different cephs to have differing abilities to handle copper exposure? According in first year chemistry, copper sulphide (CuS or Cu2S) is insoluble, so maybe it comes out of the vent and precipitates out of solution. Of course, there are many other ways copper and sulphur can combine. For a visual of this incredible animal, see: http://www.exploretheabyss.com/photo/gallery/gallery/popups/vulcanoctopusbody.htm I apologize if my quoting style is not entirely correct; I just don't want to get sued. It is a simple read, but still a great book. Recommended for rainy day weather (such as today). Cheers! Voight, J. R. 2005. Hydrothermal vent octopuses of Vulcanoctopus hydrothermalis, feeding on bathypelagic amphipods of Halice hesmonectes. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the UK, 85, 985-988.