Monday, April 16, 2007

hold these, will you?

The squid Gonatus onyx, which lives in the Pacific and Atlantic oceans, broods its eggs by holding them in its tentacles 6-9 months while they mature to hatchling stage (Siebel, et al.).

Apparently, until these photos and video were taken, it was thought these squid just dropped their eggs off on sea floor and said see ya. But, in this study, five female squid were observed holding egg masses containing 2,000-3,000 eggs at depths up to 2,522 m. off the coast of California.

This video shows one of the squids with a mature egg mass (thanks to marc for sending this to me). You can see some of the eggs hatching. Try to ignore the annoying music, which I don't think the squid picked out.

Post-spawning egg care by a squid. 2005. Nature. B.A. Siebel, B.H. Robison, and S.H.D. Haddock. vol. 438, pp. 929.

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