Echinoteuthis sp. (Whiplash squid)

- Mollusca - Cephalopoda -

Mollusca (Phylum) > Cephalopoda (Class) > Oegopsida

(Order) > Mastigoteuthidae (Family)

The taxonomy of the Mastigoteuthidae is complicated

and undergoing research to clarify the number

of species. The family is restricted to the deep

sea so observations are rare and their behaviour is

poorly understood.

Echinoteuthis glaukopis? Perhaps the first

observation of this animal since the original

description of the species.

The example here was seen on a single occasion. It seems to hang motionless in the water

column a few metres above the seabed. It is a member of the genus Echinoteuthis. The

species E. glaukopis was originally collected from the waters off the east African coast by

the 1898-1899 Valdivia expedition. It is still only known from the original description in

1908 of that specimen. More recent work suggests that E. glaukopis may not be a separate

species to E. atlantica. More specimens, particularly from the Indian Ocean, are required

in order to carry out the DNA analysis needed to determine the correct taxonomy.

Muusoctopus sp.

Mollusca (Phylum) > Cephalopoda (Class) > Octopoda (Order) > Octopodidae (Family)

The animal shown above was observed next to the blow-out preventer on the seabed at

1780 m water depth at Mzia-2 . An important feature in the identification of the genus is

the two rows of suckers, clearly visible in the image on the right. This specimen is most

likely Muusoctopus sp. and the image most resembles M. johnsonianus, a species widespread

in the deep Atlantic but poorly known in the Indian Ocean.


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