The cuttlefish is closely related to the Caribbean reef squid, and these graceful creatures are often found in shallower waters in the Caribbean, South Florida and the Bahamas. The cuttlefish has two well-developed eyes, with pupils shaped like a W. The entire length of its oblong body is surrounded by a very thin fin. They communicate by changing color or when they become excited.
This pair of cuttlefish followed us for most of a dive one afternoon as my dive buddy – who is also a professional underwater photographer – was taking pictures of the reef at about 25-30 feet. The critters watched us closely and seemed intrigued by our movements as we hovered over the reef, as long as we did not attempt to swim towards them.
We were also fascinated by their behavior and intelligence: As we reached out and held hands a couple of times while they were just in front of us, this pair also reached over to each other with their tentacles, like they were also trying to “hold hands!” We repeated our gesture several times just to watch them mimic us. If we had not observed this with our own eyes, we would have never believed it!