Do Octopus Have Teeth? Do They Bite?

Instead of teeth, octopuses have beaks. This is similar to the parrot’s beak. These teeth are made of denticles. As octopuses are invertebrates, they have no bones.

However, though they have no bones, yet they bite. Their sharp beaks are venomous. They use their beaks to crush food. Octopuses depend on their beaks strongly as they have no teeth.

Moreover, they’ll bite anything or anyone who comes close to octopuses. Though octopuses are not dangerous to humans, it’s better to be careful.

Until now if you are curious enough about this and want to know more. Then stay with us throughout the article. In this article, we’ll unfold all the facts regarding teeth of an octopus.

So, let’s get started.

Does An Octopus Have Teeth?

Octopuses don’t have teeth as we humans do. They don’t have a typical mouth; instead, they have beaks like parrots.

These beaks are made of a substance called chitin. There are other marine creatures’ exoskeletons made of this ingredient.

octoppus beak

Like octopuses, all cephalopods have these beaks that help them to catch their prey. They resemble the beak of a parrot and the jaws of an octopus but are much stronger and sharper.

Octopuses use their beaks to crush their food. Moreover, these strong and powerful beaks will bite anything that picks up octopuses.

Also, inside the beak, there’s a tongue part called the radula. There are tiny white teeth-like structures that’ll cover the radula. These are also known as denticles. You’ll find hundreds of denticles. The main component of denticles is dentin which is mineralized tissue.

This is also similar to bone. Though dentin doesn’t contain bone cells, it is even harder than bone.

Octopuses use their beak to rip out food. On the other hand, radula will help in grinding the food. It can also utilize the radula to bore holes into its victim. This is helpful if their diet consists primarily of crab and shellfish.

These two body parts are very important for the food processing of octopuses.

How Many Teeth Do Octopuses Have?

Octopuses have eight tentacles with eight suckers in each string. These suckers can hold up to 30 times more weight than their body weight. This indicates the strong suction power of octopuses.

What Are Octopus Beaks Made Of?

The beak of an octopus is located at the intersection of its eight legs. It contains a component called chitin. It’s hard to break chitin.

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Their beak is divided into an upper and a lower, just like a human mouth. Octopuses have strong beaks that they can utilize to break apart their prey. It’s so powerful that it can break a clamshell.

Chitin is a versatile substance found in many different applications across the natural world. In fungal cells, it serves as the primary structural component. The exoskeletons of many insects and crustaceans are comprised of chitin.

Can An Octopus Bite Human?

Yes. Like any other creature, octopuses can bite anyone if they feel danger around them. But they typically avoid humans because they are scared of us. More importantly, octopuses are not dangerous to humans.

However, by any chance, if octopuses attack you, that means they see you as food. Which can be a little dangerous, but you can escape the situation if you know how to handle this. No worries, we’ll discuss this later in this article.

Now back to if octopuses bite humans or not. Usually, octopuses will attack humans in self-defence, not in any aggression.

Nevertheless, several pieces of evidence show that octopuses attack humans really hard. Basically, octopuses push their venom as soon as anyone touches them.

Moreover, Russian scuba diver Dmitriy Rudas captured on tape in 2014 a big pacific octopus entangling its tentacles in another diver’s gear.


However, the diver never loses his composure, even when confronted with the giant octopus.

Before the octopus can grasp his camera gear, he has to free himself from its tentacles.

It takes the octopus a while to free himself from his attacker, but he never displays any genuine aggressiveness during that time.

Basically, these incidents show that you should take steps slowly if octopuses attack you.

Is An Octopus Deadly?

Toxin-wise, octopuses are not a major danger to people. It’s possible that octopuses are venomous, but only a few numbers pose a real threat to humans.

Only four species of blue-ringed octopus are considered to be a serious hazard to humans out of an estimated 300 octopus species found in the world’s waters.

A highly lethal poison, combining tetrodotoxin and dopamine, is secreted by the blue-ringed octopus.

This neurotoxin, produced by this dangerous species of octopus, is 1,200 times more lethal than cyanide. Blue-ringed octopus venom is particularly difficult to treat because no antidote is currently available.

What Should You Do If an Octopus Attacks You?

If an octopus comes close, you should swim away as quickly as possible. Because of their territorial nature, octopuses are generally uninterested in you once you leave their domain.

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But there are more things you can do if an attack you. Let’s see here.

● Swim Away

If the octopus is small or medium-sized, then you’ll be able to swim away. However, it’ll be a little difficult to escape if you get attacked by the giant pacific octopus.

Move forward and away from the octopus’s tentacles as much as possible. But you can try the next steps if it doesn’t work.

● Avoid Octopus Before Wrapped Up

The main weapon of octopuses is their tentacles. Firstly, they’ll try to wrap you up with their arms. So, whenever you see an octopus wrapping itself with a rock or coral, try to avoid them.

Or even if they come close to you, the first thing you should do is to avoid their arms. Because once it wraps you with its arms, it’ll be difficult to remove them.

● Put Slight Pressure on Its Tentacles

Octopuses have great strength and curiosity, yet they exhaust easily. Squeezing and applying pressure to its arms will cause it to release them.

● Slowly Remove the Suckers from Your Body

Now, if you can’t escape from the grabbing of an octopus, then you have to peel its suckers off of you slowly. And you can’t be in a hurry while doing it. You have to do it in gentle touch so that the suckers don’t reattach you.

● Lean Back

If an octopus is tied to a rock or still has part of its body within its den, it will be hesitant to swim out.

By leaning back and moving away from your attacker, you can either dislodge it from its hiding spot or get it to let go of you.

● Protect Your Mask and Regulator

Octopuses are more likely to be encountered by scuba divers than swimmers since they favour deeper waters.

The octopus poses the biggest threat to the diver if it can dislodge the regulator and cut off the diver’s oxygen supply.

Dragging your mask off your face is annoying and reduces your field of vision, but it’s not life-threatening. But still, you have to be more careful.

● Use Somersaults

Turn somersaults in the water if the octopus releases itself from its tether but continues to cling to you. The octopus will become annoyed and release its grip.

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Lastly, if you get attacked by an octopus, keep your arms free, shield your regulator and mask, and move slowly but strongly.


● What do you call the beak of an octopus?

The buccal mass of all known cephalopods is home to a two-part beak or rostrum encompassed by the head’s musculature. The upper (or dorsal) mandible is paired with the lower (or ventral) jaw to form a pair of scissors. The term “beak” can also refer to the jaws or “mandibles” of an animal.

● How Can You Remove Octopus Beaks?

Cut the beak off around the tentacles and throw it away. Cast aside the bird’s beak. Drain the octopus after rinsing it. Keep in mind that the entrails have already been removed from frozen octopuses, so all that remains is to cut off the beak and the bottom of the sac.

● Is the Octopus’s Beak a Bone?

The gradual change in material properties from the harder beak to the softer body of the cephalopod is beneficial because it can withstand the high forces generated when biting into prey. Cephalopods are invertebrates. Hence their beaks rely on soft tissues and strong muscles instead of jaw bones.

● Do Octopuses Have Small Beaks?

The beak length is expressed as an index of the upper hood or UhL (range 2.2-12.9 mm). For shorter hoods, use the abbreviation “LhL,” which stands for “low (1.8-9.7 mm). The upper crest height varies from 8.3 to 44.0 mm. On the other hand, the lower crest height is between 4.4 to 22.5 mm.

● What Would Happen If a Blue-ringed Octopus Bites You?

A bite from a blue-ringed octopus’ beak can be fatal, despite its relatively small size. Victims may not feel any pain at the time of the bite, but they may experience muscle paralysis and eventual asphyxiation as a result of the attack.


So, does an octopus have teeth? No, they don’t. But they have beaks that they use to break their prey’s body or shell.

Furthermore, octopuses don’t attack people frequently. Even if they do, they do it in self-defence.

These sentient invertebrates typically prefer to keep to themselves and steer clear of any interaction with humans.

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