Ben Savard was photographing an octopus at Middlebury College in Vermont on Monday when the animal suddenly grabbed the camera and snapped some photos of its own.

Savard, a digital media producer, wanted to capture some photos of the octopuses the school's neuroscience students have been studying.

"I put a GoPro in a waterproof casing, set it to take a rapid number of photos per second and, with the help of the neuroscience student behind me in the photos, placed the camera in the octopus tank," he told MNN. "We did this a few times with different octopuses and one of the more cheeky cephalopods grabbed the camera and turned it around on me for a quick couple of pictures."

In those few seconds, the sassy cephalopod shot a surprisingly good photo of Savard, which you can see above.

Savard posted the photos on Reddit, where they quickly reached the front page. However, some users have accused Savard of staging the photos.

"You caught me," he replied on the thread. "Middlebury College is secretly using upvotes instead of food as a reward in its animal research."

Savard assures us the photos are real and even created a GIF documenting the impromptu photo shoot.

The octopus with the surprising flair for photography is a California two-spot octopus, which Middlebury neuroscience students have been observing to see if the species can open boxes of food more quickly after seeing other octopuses do it.

Below, check out some of the photos from the octopus' surprise photo shoot.

octopus in tank

octopus tentacle

octopus takes photo

octopus with Ben coming into view

octopus photo with Ben more in view

octopus takes photo of Ben Savard

Laura Moss writes about a variety of topics with a focus on animals, science, language and culture. But she mostly writes about cats.

Octopus snatches camera, snaps photos of photographer
Ben Savard was trying to photograph an octopus when suddenly he became the cephalopod's subject.