Man Escapes Venomous Death After Spotting Blue-Ringed Octopus At Hot Pot Restaurant
"Isn't this a blue-ringed octopus? Can I put it into my hot pot?" the man asked.
A suspicious diner in Guangdong, China, narrowly avoided death after questioning on social media if the octopus on his table at a hot pot restaurant was safe to eat
In a post on Weibo on 16 January, the man posted a photo of an odd-looking octopus covered in blue circular markings among other octopuses in a basket full of ice.
He asked if anyone could identify if it was a blue-ringed octopus, which is known to be one of the world's most venomous animals.
"I saw this in a hot pot restaurant. Isn't this a blue-ringed octopus? Can I put it into my hot pot? I'll wait online, this is urgent," the man asked.
Thankfully, in less than an hour, a science education channel saw the photo and confirmed the Weibo user's suspicions
The verified channel wrote, "It is indeed a blue-ringed octopus. Their venom contains tetrodotoxin. The toxins are very strong and won't be neutralised even after cooking. Even if you take it back as a souvenir, never ever eat it."
In a note of warning, the channel added that others have found blue-ringed octopuses accidentally mixed in with commercially-sold octopuses before, but such cases have been rarely reported.
After seeing the science channel's answer, many concerned Weibo users quickly flocked to the hot pot diner's post to see if he was safe
"Are you okay? You haven't eaten it, right? Quickly tell the restaurant that the octopus is poisonous and cannot be eaten," someone wrote.
In a few minutes, the diner assured: "I didn't eat it. It's already been removed."
The post has since garnered over six million views on Weibo, with other netizens congratulating the man for being skeptical before eating the venomous creature
“This shows that knowledge can change fate," said a Weibo user.
Another cried, "Good on you. If it were me, I would have already eaten it."
According to Ocean Conservancy, blue-ringed octopuses are extremely dangerous to humans even though they are merely the size of a golf ball.
The octopus' venomous bite will first block nerve signals, and can cause death due to respiratory arrest and muscle paralysis within minutes.