A woman has made a "sad" and "disturbing" find on a quiet Wirral beach which has left people baffled at how the creature ended up so far up north.

Sarah Briscoe was taking a walk along the beach when she came across the luminescent body of a whole octopus nestled amidst some seaweed along the shoreline near the Hoyle Road slipway on Hoylake beach in Wirral.

Taking a picture of the unusual find, which she posted in a local Facebook group, Sarah said: "Wow! I've never seen one of these washed up on the beach before. I'm just sad I didn't see it in the sea alive."

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Speaking to the ECHO about her find, Sarah said: "My immediate reaction to it was 'wow'

"I took [the picture] this morning and it's the first one I've seen.

"I go on the beach every day at least once and often walk right out to the low tide line but this really caught my attention this morning.

Sarah Briscoe spotted the creature while out for a morning walk
Sarah Briscoe spotted the creature while out for a morning walk

"I'm guessing it must have been washed up in last night's tide."

Her post sparked dozens of reactions, with one person pointing out that octopuses don't tend to be found so far north.

One person said: "Fascinating, but I agree it's a sad sight. Much nicer to see it alive and 'kicking!'"

Another said she thought the find was "disturbing."

One person said they'd also spotted one recently.

She said: "I saw one in Marine Lake last week, thought I was going crazy and had to go back for another look.

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"Typically the one day I didn't have my phone to show you all.

"And then I daren't ask if it could've been one, as I was sure I read you can only find them in Mediterranean waters "

According to the Wildlife Trusts, the common octopus, while often seen in the Mediterranean can also be found in the UK and is "most common on south and west coasts of the UK."

Female common octopuses are thought to be "devoted mothers" tending day and night to the eggs, dying shortly after their young have hatched.

It's not the first eye-catching sight to have turned up on Merseyside beaches.

Two weeks ago the remains of a deceased rabbit was spotted on Formby beach and last week clusters of marine springtails gave people 'the creeps' after they were spotted squirming among the rocks on New Brighton beach.

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