Upcoming exciting finds

Steve O'Shea

TONMO Supporter
Staff member
Nov 19, 2002
Just posting a couple of images online of some truly remarkable squid that have been found floating off the Maldives.

Dr Shiham Adam, Director of Fisheries Research at the Marine Research Centre, Republic of Maldives, has forwarded to me several images of these squid recently found floating off the Maldives. We will be examining these specimens at the first available opportunity, but they are one of the most remarkable finds in recent years (and an order of magnitude more scarce than Architeuthis!!!!). There are many more images that we'll post online shortly. The squid are in excess of 9 feet in length!

Watch this space. We're excited!


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This is going to be fascinating, thanks for the images Steve. A couple of quick questions:

1) I'm assuming that 9 feet is the maximum recorded length for Grimalditeuthis. Just how rare is it for a specimen of this size and condition to be caught?

2) Am I correct in thinking that Grimalditeuthis has TWO pairs of fins? If so, where are the second pair, or are they just off the photographs?

3) In the 'red' photo, is that a bite mark on the flank of the dead animal?

Thanks in advance!
Question about the red one...Does the color he still had mean he was freshly dead? I know when my octos die sometimes their pigment slowly goes to white.
Hi Steve,

Great stuff. Look forward to hearing about the examinations. Can you share any details about the circumstances of the find? Were they picked up by fishermen?


I'm working on getting all of the details now (apparently a couple of hundred metres offshore the seafloor dives to several thousand metres; they were taken dead at the surface by tuna fishermen; and there are no deep-sea fisheries in the region [this is way deep]).

I've plenty more photos here, including those with the double fin. The really red one, with the 'bite' (I'm assuming that this is what it is too), was actually discarded - it was collected in Jan '05; rather sad, as it was in much better condition than the second one (in a freezer). The second one has lost the second fin (whereas it was perfect in the first one; photos to place online yet) and was collected this month.

I haven't my literature with me right now, but I'm guessing that these are the largest, if not extremely close to the largest specimens of this species thus far known. They render my 20cm specimen in collections rather pathetic.

In the event further specimens are salvaged from the sea surface they'll not be discarded; they didn't fully appreciate how rare these animals are (although they knew they were interesting enough to give us a call).

Carol, re the colour, I've had specimens of many squid that retain the red colouration long after the animals have died; I've not seen a squid turn 'white' like an octopus can. When an Archi goes white it's because the skin is abraded.

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