Cephalopod expert Danna Staaf (author of The Lady and the Octopus and Monarchs of the Sea) talks with Skaana host Mark Leiren-Young about the alien world of octopuses, the secret lives of squid and her two new books Nursery Earth: The Wondrous Lives of Baby Animals and the Extraordinary Ways They Shape Our World and The Lives of Octopuses and Their Relatives: A Natural History of Cephalopods. “They are definitely our fellow earthlings and some of the oddest ones we share the planet with.”


3:20 Meet Danna Staaf. “They are extremely intelligent animals with extremely short life-spans.”

6:12 Meet Danna Staaf’s first pet octopus – Serendipity.

12:32 “There’s this tension between the alien and the familiar in them.” And octopus decor…

13:50 “They are definitely our fellow earthlings and some of the oddest ones we share the planet with.”

15:49 How and why cephalopods lost their shells.

22:15 The difference between octopus and squid. “Squid basically evolved for swimming and for speed.”

25:10 “Cephalopods are amazing.”

27:13 “These are real animals that inspired a lot of myths and legends.”

28:35 “Squid are like the protein bars of the oceans.”

31:30 Squid squads!

32:36 Baby animals doot doot doot doot – Danna Staff’s new baby book!

34:31 “At any given moment, most of the animals on earth are babies… I find all of them to be adorable in their own ways.”

41:20 Her favourite odd octopus facts… donut brains!

42:17 “I love asking what if questions about nature and about science.”

44:20 How humans are threatening octopuses and the health of the oceans.

Skaana podcasts connect you to news and experts and their discussions about environments, oceans, and orcas.
Danna Staff Author Photo_credit Josh Weaver
Danna Staff Author Photo – credit Josh Weaver
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