Like all cephalopods, octopuses have an extra trick up their sleeve with their inking abilities. Their siphon is used to shoot out a jet water for quick escapes, expel waste and secrete ink from within the mantle. When an octopus is startled or threatened it can contract the siphon to release the ink, which mixes with mucous to form a sticky, confusing smokescreen. Ink is black thanks to melanin – the substance responsible for dark skin and hair in humans. Ink also contains a compound called tyrosinase that can cause irritation, stinging the predator’s eyes and befuddling their senses. All of this effectively stalls an attack, allowing the octopus to jet to safety.