A TEENAGER has been left amazed after finding a live octopus on a North-East beach before it camouflaged itself to blend in with rocks.

Callum Barker and his dad Steven, of Hartlepool, were walking along Blackhall Rocks Beach on Teesside when the 16-year-old spotted a bright octopus in a rock pool.

Mr Barker, 50, said: "Callum shouted me over to a rock pool and said that he thought he saw a carrier bag in the water.

The Northern Echo: The octopus found at the beachThe octopus found at the beach

"It turned out to be the octopus. 

"We were amazed as we had never seen one in the wild before, it was crawling over the rocks trying to get back into the sea."

Mr Barker, who was worried about the seagulls overhead and did not want the octopus to be attacked, picked up the "very cold and slimy" creature and returned it to the sea.

The Northern Echo: The octopus found in a rockpoolThe octopus found in a rockpool

He added: "It sat there for a while and changed colour to a speckled orange and red to blend in with the rocks, then it swam away.

"Callum was exploring the rock pools to see if there were any critters about, we tend to look out for unusual things on beaches but we have never found anything like this before.

The Northern Echo: The octopus found in a rockpool.The octopus found in a rockpool.

"He once found a huge oyster in Wales but that was about it.

"I'm amazed by the response [to the octopus]. I shared the pictures really to find out if octopuses live off our coast and as it turns out they do, but it is rare to see one on land.

"A few people have said that they have seen dead ones washed up on the beach but no living ones, I think I`ll remember the one we found for a very long time.

The Northern Echo: The octopus found in a rockpool.The octopus found in a rockpool.

"We were talking about it for the rest of the day."

They had been walking on the beach for two hours, alongside family friend Tony Winward, before making the discovery on April 20. 

  • Have you found anything strange on the beach or have a story to tell? Get in touch at tasmin.lockwood@newsquest.co.uk