Pillar Point, California
Juvenile. I found a whole piece of kelp that somehow got ripped up from the tide and I saw all sorts of cool stuff under the base of it like coral and hermit crabs. Well, I'm about ready to leave and I see something crawling. It turned out to be this poor little guy trying to get back to sea. I felt bad so I made sure the little guy got his wish and put him back to sea. Help from Robberfly for ID. Thank you.
Eating a crab.
Found in kelp during low tide, mantle was about 4-5 cm in length.
The East Pacific red octopus (Octopus rubescens) is the most commonly occurring shallow-water octopus on much of the North American West Coast, and a ubiquitous benthic predator in these habitats. Its range extends from the southern Gulf of California at least to the Gulf of Alaska, but may also occur in the western Pacific Ocean. O. rubescens occurs intertidally to a depth of 300 m.