The octopuses of Narooma are gaining a reputation as bird killers after another gruesome incident this week.
A large octopus was seen dragging a poor wood duck to its death at the Narooma Marina on Tuesday, shocking bystanders.
This follows a report in the Narooma News last year of an octopus snagging and devouring a pigeon at the rockwall under the Narooma Bridge.
Witnessing the final stages of this latest watery drama was Les Waldock, who happens to be the president of the Narooma Sport and Game Fishing Club.
“Now you don't see this every day,” Mr Waldock said. “A duck, paddling around Narooma Marina, minding its own business, when an octopus takes to it.”
He said after a 10-minute struggle, the octopus finally drowned the duck dragging it under the water.
But not before the owners of boatshed attempted to save the still-living duck, engaging in a tug-of-war with the octopus.
They gave up trying to remove the struggling duck from the octopus’ tentacles, fearing they may have “pulled its head off”, he said.
When Mr Waldock arrived, he said the octopus had surfaced again, wrapping itself around a jetty pole with the now dead bird's head just above the waterline.
Why? because there was at least one massive bull ray circling the pole wanting to cash in on the feed but it was unable to get to the duck due to where the octopus had positioned itself.
“Nature at its best!” he said.
We are unsure if birds normally form part of the octopus diet, but one thing is for sure, if you have feathers make sure to keep an eye under the water.
Mr Waldock said a pair of wood ducks and their four chicks were a common sight at the Narooma Marina before Christmas, but then the family slowly dwindled to three chicks, then two chicks and finally no chicks.
“Maybe it was the octopus all along and now it’s going after the adults too,” he said.