A tourist in Australia picked up a beautiful tiny octopus and originally posted it on TikTok with "What a pretty octopus" written in Mandarin. But what the tourist didn't seem to know is that he was holding a blue-ringed octopus, which "carries enough venom to kill 26 full grown adults in a span of minutes," according to Gizmodo.
The venom of the blue-ringed octopus, which contains the neurotoxin tetrodotoxin, causes paralysis and the sting is so small that most people have no idea that they’ve been poisoned until it’s too late.
To make things even more horrifying, there’s no anti-venom available for the blue-ringed octopus. The only known treatment is to massage the victim’s heart until the venom works its way throughout a person’s body in a matter of hours.
Marine ecology expert Michael Keough from the University of Melbourne said picking up an octopus exposes the hand to the beak, a few millimetres-long horny barb located on the bottom of the octopus between its tentacles.
"It can only bite if it's on top of something," he said.
Designed to pierce the exoskeletons of crabs, the octopus's beak releases a neurotoxin from its glands that causes paralysis, causing its prey to stop breathing and die "within an hour".