In a unique video, a group of wild octopuses can be seen tossing silt and shells at one another.
The video shows the octopuses gathering silt, shells, and algae in their arms before "throwing" them with their jet propulsion.
The gloomy octopus, also known as Octopus tetricus, is frequently observed in the subtropical waters of eastern Australia and New Zealand.
Darker-colored octopuses in the latest study threw and were more likely to strike other animals, indicating that these were intentional rather than accidental displays of violence.
It has been demonstrated in the past that octopuses use this jet propulsion to clear their dens of debris and wasted food.
However, the video reveals that when they were spotted tossing objects at other octopuses, their arms acquired a particularly unusual position, indicating that the actions were intentional.
Targeted throwing is a rare animal action that is supposed to have played a key part in the development of humans.
A small number of social animals, such as chimpanzees, elephants, mongooses, and birds, have also been observed throwing at a target.