Vampire squid


10:24 AM

1 min read
Vampire squid Blog Image


Recently, scientists found a rare vampire squid, the second known living species, inside the deep water off South China Sea.

About Vampire Squid: 

  • It is a small (12-inch-long) cephalopod found in deep temperate and tropical seas.
  • The vampire squid possesses characteristics of both squid and octopi, and occupies its own order in taxonomy (scientific classification).
  • Habitat
    • It lives in the tropical and subtropical oceans of the world at depths ranging from 300-3000m with a majority of squids living between the ranges of 1,500-2,500m.
    • Vampire squids live in the oxygen minimum layer of the ocean where virtually no light penetrates
  • Characteristics
    • It has black chromatophores with reddish-brown ones interspersed.
    • In contrast to other cephalopods, these chromatophores are non-functional because they have lost the muscles that enable rapid color change.
    • It shares most other features with other octopods and decapods, but it has several adaptations that allow it to live in a deep-sea environment.
    • The vampire squid also has photophores which are large circular organs which are located posterior to each adult fin and are also distributed over the surface of the mantle, funnel, head, and aboral surface.
    • These photoreceptors produce luminescent clouds of glowing particles that allow the vampire squid to glow.
    • Its most intriguing physical characteristic is that it has proportionally the largest eyes of any animal in the world.
    • Food habit: They are deep-sea scavengers and are in fact usually gravitate toward feces and dead animals.

Q1: What are chromatophores?

These are organs that are present in the skin of many cephalopods, such as squids, cuttlefish, and octopuses, which contain pigment sacs that become more visible as small radial muscles pull the sac open making the pigment expand under the skin.

Source: Rare vampire squid's appearance in South China Sea leaves biologists puzzled