Have You Heard The One About the Chimerapus?


Dec 20, 2005
Greetings all,

While scanning the web for cephalopod happenings, I stumbled across a surprising little journal article. Apparently, a new genus of octopus was found in the deep of the Pacific a little while back, and its discovery went somewhat unnoticed. This new creature, however, is quite different from its fellow octopods as it's mantle resembles that of shark's head! (In males anyway.) The researchers hypothesize that the "mouth-like" structure plays a role in reproductive competition. It is dubbed the "Sharkclub Octopus", Galeoctopus lateralis with the "club" reference completely flying over my head. Funny thing is, I can't find much else about it, save the online article in the Journal of Molluscan Studies and a couple other sites mentioning it in brief. My attempts to contact one of the researchers via email has failed, so I am now imploring you, the good folks at Tonmo, to enlighten me, as my interest in this chimera-pus is slowly becoming obsession. Check out the links below if ya tink I'm hoodwinkin' youse!



Hmmmmm; that one slipped under my radar also. I'll get a copy next week and tell you more about it then.

Odd that they would have used a so-called generic character for the common name; also, I'm not really convinced that each and every octopus and squid species needs a common name; I feel it's an unecessary ploy to attract a bit of press (although we're equally as guilty of doing this). These things are so bloody rare and will be found or recognised only by the specialist that the binomial will suffice (darned if I'm going to remember both common and scientific names!).
I'm surprised this passed by our TONMO radar!

But... in looking deeper, the article says it has ligula that resembles a shark's head, not a mantle... the ligula is the tip of the hectocotylus, used for mating, yes?

Interesting stuff in any event!
Ok, wow, sounds cool!
I was sort of thinking that this was a fake, that the articles weren't real (though granted I didn't actually read either of them. Come'on, sharkclubed octopus with a mouth, sounds a little suspect to me). However, thanks to the wonders of Dal's library website I downloaded a copy of the paper published in Journal of Molluscan Studies entitled "The Sharkclub Octopus, Galeoctopus lateralis, a new genus and species of deep-water octopus from the western Pacific Ocean (Cephalopoda: Octopodidae)". Unfortunately I'm due for a family visit, but I shall try to read through it tonight and post anything of interest.