Steve Beissinger and his colleagues have been spending a lot of time outdoors. For 15 years, the conservation biology professor, who is affiliated with Berkeley’s Museum of Vertebrate Zoology, has led researchers tracking wildlife across myriad California habitats, from coastline to desert to mountain range.
It is a curious thing to consider that UC Berkeley, a school notably lacking a marine biology program, has produced not one, not two, but three published studies on the venerable octopus within the last year. But then octopuses, too, are curious to consider. They have three hearts; blue, copper-based blood; regenerating tentacles; and a level of sentience unique among invertebrates.