Divers David Malvestuto and Warren Murray had a strange run-in with an 8-foot octopus when the sea creature tried to wrestle a camera away from Murray.

Malvestuto, 34, and Murray, 56, ran into the giant Pacific octopus off the coast of Carmel, California in Bluefish Cove. The majestic creature was camouflaged on the rocks when the divers approached and began snapping photographs. Alerted to their presence, the octopus approached Murray, wrapping its tentacles around the underwater camera and even around Murray’s arms as well. While Malvestuto filmed the entire encounter, Murray also managed to take photos while the octopus hugged the camera. The flash from Murray’s camera startled the octopus and caused it to let go before the animal had the chance to cause any damage to Murray.

Murray theorized after that the octopus must have seen its reflection in the camera lens and explored thinking it was a fellow octopus. Still, in the moment, the octopus’ movements took both divers by surprise, though they say they were not afraid.

“I wasn’t too worried. Generally they are not too interested in people. They’ll just take off. I was thinking he would take off as soon as I got close to it. When he wasn’t moving, I was excited,” Murray told the New York Daily News.

Malvestuto echoed Murray’s statements, saying that he was mainly concerned that his fellow diver felt safe.

“I was a little concerned… but we both knew they are harmless. He was very cool and collected. I wanted to make sure nothing bad would happen,” said Malvestuto.

Olivia Truffaut-Wong

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