Cephalopod identification sources?

Nov 5, 2014
Queensland, Australia
Any good sources for cephalopod ID on a global scale? I have two good ID books (A Guide to Squid, Cuttlefish and Octopuses of Australasia - Mark Norman & Amanda Reid / Reef Creature Identification, Tropical Pacific - Paul Humann & Ned DeLoach). These are great sources, especially as they focus on the area that I live...but I am hoping to find a source that encompasses all cephs, especially with a greater focus on squid ID as my books are a bit lacking in that area and they are more difficult for me to differentiate, especially while in the field.

I know there is the Identification section of this site, but I am after a more easily accessible, quick reference guide. Any help is appreciated, cheers!
There is a list of books that might interest you under the Scientific Books post in this thread.

Mark Norman has another book (Cephalopods A World Guide , that is the defacto "Bible" for trying to ID octopuses in the wild (and likely replicates much of the one you have but that one is not to be found in the US). Unfortunately, it is out of print, hard to locate and had not been updated - anyone that owns it won't loan it out :biggrin2:. The FAO Cephalopods of the World catalog has diagrams and a write-up for most known species but I have not found it helpful for visual ID of live animals. The link no longer points to the newest collection and I will try to find it and update the links. Vol1 2005 is Nautiluses and Sepoids, Vol2 2010 is Myopsid And Oegopsid Squids and Vol3 2013. These can be purchased (expensive) but there are/were free downloads. If you go looking before I find the latest links, do not check both the Vol and the date as there are older versions that do not match the latest volume identification scheme. If you have a DropBox account, PM me and I can try to send you a copy of the pdfs but they are too large to email.
OK, I found the PDF links on the FAO site:

Vol1 Chambered Nautiluses and Sephoids (2005)
Vol2 Myopsid and Oegopsid Squids (2010)
Vol3 Octopods and Vampire Squids (2013)

The FAO link for Vol1 seems to have problems using an embedded link (but will open directly from FAO), the other two will work from here. You can go directly to the FAO site, click on Publications, click on Search and then type in cephalopods to obtain the linked list. The Vol 2 and Vol 3 links above will bring up the PDFs. There is a zipped version on the FAO site as well.
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Awesome, thanks for the tips. Yeah, I don't think my uni funding will cover the World Guide book as it is something I don't really "need"...but just want. Maybe I can save up for it if you think it is worth it.
My internet is a bit too slow where I'm currently at to download the PDFs, but I'll get them in a few weeks when I'm back home. Thanks.
Kir Nesis's 1982/87 Cephalopods of the World is my ceph bible though I'm not sure how easy it is to get copies of. Otherwise TolWeb.org is very good for squid IDing, and is more up-to-date than any book can be. However, for groups whose scientists aren't active on TolWeb (eg, many octopus groups) the pages are scant.
I've been trying to pickup a copy of Nesis book. Amazon has used copies but I am holding out until I am out of reading material OR find a cheaper copy.
There is one currently on eBay so don't bid against me :biggrin2:.

If you can find a copy of World Guide for under $50 it is a decent buy and worth the investment IF your current book only covers AU and NZ animals (the octopus section is the most extensive). It is full of colored photos as well as varying details (depending upon what was known at the time). The physical bindings on the book were terrible but the content quality quite good. I think it originally sold for around $65. ($ are US). For a few years we could find it new at a reduced price but it has all but disappeared in the last couple of years.

The PDF's are worth having but are more helpful if examining a dead animal.
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Here's an oldie, but it may be helpful:

Roper CFE, Young RE, Voss GL (1969) An Illustrated Key to the Families of the Order Teuthoidea (Cephalopoda). 1–32.

It provides a dichotomous key to ID a squid down at least to the family level using only external morphology.

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