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Cuttlefish "arms"

Rpm53

Hatchling
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Jan 9, 2006
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1
I volunteer at the National Zoo in Washington, D.C. We have several new cuttles. I notice when stalking prey, they often have two "arms" up high. Does anyone know why this is? Perhaps a distraction to the prey?
 

Steve O'Shea

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Nov 19, 2002
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Rpm53 said:
I volunteer at the National Zoo in Washington, D.C. We have several new cuttles. I notice when stalking prey, they often have two "arms" up high. Does anyone know why this is? Perhaps a distraction to the prey?
Hmmmmmm. Interesting observation! The same thing occurs in Sepioteuthis (non cuttle) that we have here.

I have noticed this most often when squid stocking density is high, and/or when new prey is added to the tank that is of comparable size to larger than the squid (they're sizing it up); try and see if they are scrunching their eyes forward, along the arms. They don't do it to me, as in facing me (so I don't think this is an agressive posture to me, as a potential threat to them), but this seems to be something between individuals in the tank and/or their prey. Moreover, the dorsal arms on Sepioteuthis are considerably shorter than the lateral arms (those held high), and when the arms are held high like this I notice that the dorsal arms are also lowered to cover the buccal mass/bulb. If it was a sign of aggression I would have thought that the beaks would have been exposed to a potential aggressor/threat.

Oh to get inside the pin-sized brain of a squid!

By the way,:welcome: there Rpm53
 

Colin

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Nov 14, 2002
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I always considered that my officinalis were doing that as part of breaking up their outline for camouflage purposes.

They would do it while sneaking up on food and also while just hanging out in the caulerpa or similar
 

Graeme

Vampyroteuthis
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Sep 26, 2005
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352
Rpm53 said:
I volunteer at the National Zoo in Washington, D.C. We have several new cuttles. I notice when stalking prey, they often have two "arms" up high. Does anyone know why this is? Perhaps a distraction to the prey?
Which pair of arms? If I knew I might be able to think up something crazy that sounds good. :wink:

Graeme
 

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