Cuttlefish, Nautilus, Octopus, Squid
Compiler and date details
2007 - Sepiida updated by A.L. Reid, University of Wollongong, Australia
2003, 2007 - updated (part), Mark Norman, Museum Victoria, Melbourne
30 June 2000 - C.C. Lu, National Chung Hsing University, Taichung, Taiwan
The Class Cephalopoda Cuvier, 1798 comprises three subclasses, Ammonoidea, Nautiloidea, and Coleoidea. All ammonoids are extinct. The Nautiloidea comprises 15 orders; only the order Nautilida is still extant, and within it only the family Nautilidae, and one genus, Nautilus. All other living cephalopods belong to the Coleoidea. Extant coleoids are divided into five orders, some 46 families and 134 genera (Clarke 1988). Thirty-six families, represented by 76 genera, have been found in Australian waters.
Life histories are unknown for most cephalopods in the Australian fauna and those we know at all are fragmentary at best (Boyle 1983, 1987) and based largely on work done on relevant groups overseas. Generally, cephalopods are fast growing and short-lived, most species being semelparous, although exceptions do occur. Cephalopods are dioecious, and many species show sexual dimorphism in size or body proportions, extremes being some pelagic incirrate octopods such as Argonauta and Ocythoe in which adult males are dwarfs. Cephalopod development is direct: hatchlings of species with large eggs resemble miniature adults, and hatchlings of species with small eggs undergo only gradual change in body proportions (Young & Harman 1988; Sweeney et al. 1992). Most cephalopods are active, opportunistic carnivores. Nautilus species, however, feed close to the bottom, and may scavenge. Coleoids prey upon crustaceans, fishes and molluscs including cephalopods. Many examples of cannibalism are known. Other prey include echinoderms and polychaetes (Nixon 1987).
Cephalopods have been fished in many artisanal fisheries for several thousand years and have been valued food items of Greeks and Chinese since ancient time. Potential cephalopod catch resources worldwide are estimated to be 100–500 million tonnes per year (Gulland 1971; Voss 1977).
Coleoid cephalopods are a small but increasing component of Australia's fisheries production. Species of established or potential commercial importance belong primarily to four families: Sepiidae, Loliginidae, Ommastrephidae and Octopodidae. Major increases in production between the mid-1970s and early 1980s were due largely to Taiwanese demersal trawling in northern waters for loliginids and sepiids, and intermittent activities of Japanese, Taiwanese and Korean squid-jigging vessels targeting ommastrephids off the southern coast. Annual consumption of cephalopods in Australia exceeds 10 000 tonnes. Although production from all sources in our waters has greatly exceeded this amount in some years (>10 000 tonnes in 1979-80), most found its way to the home markets of the foreign fishing nations mentioned above (Dunning 1982). In 1998/99, Australia imported in excess of 9000 tonnes of squid and octopus. In addition to their direct contribution to fisheries production, coleoid cephalopods play an important role in the ecology of the ocean. They are an important prey of marine mammals such as toothed whales, many species of seals and seabirds, and large fishes such as tunas and sharks. In turn they consume large quantities of crustaceans, cephalopods and fishes. Their indirect importance to marine fisheries is considerable.
Traditionally, extant Coleoidea have been divided into three orders: Sepioidea, Teuthoidea, Vampyromorpha and Octopoda (G.L. Voss 1977, 1988a, 1988b). More recently, following M.R. Clarke (1988), five orders have been recognised, Sepiida, Sepiolida, Teuthida, Vampromorpha, and Octopoda. Teuthida is further subdivided into two suborders, Myopsida and Oegopsida, and Octopoda into Cirrata and Incirrata. All are represented in Australian waters.
Taxonomic description of coleoids from Australian waters dates back to Lesueur (1821), however, due to the lack of detailed descriptions and illustrations, these early species remain unrecognisable. Quoy & Gaimard (1832) reported the zoological results of Dumont d'Urville's voyage aboard l'Astrolabe (1826–1829) and described four species from south-eastern Australia; Gray (1849) and Hoyle (1886) both described many species from Australia. In 1892, Brazier published the first comprehensive list of Australian cephalopods, including 20 octopod species, 19 cuttlefish species, eight myopsid squid species, five oegopsid squid species and four Nautilus species.
Twentieth Century works include Berry's (1918) report on the cephalopod collections made by the F.I.S. Endeavour in south-eastern Australia between 1909 and 1914, with 13 species, eight of them new. The next major reports were those of Iredale (1926, 1940, 1954), and Cotton's (1929, 1931, 1932) studies of Australian cuttlefish, among them descriptions of 35 new species or subspecies. In 1945, Allen published the results of her studies of the planktonic cephalopod larvae from eastern Australian waters; she reported 21 species, including two new species and several new records for Australia. Adam's (1979) report on the Sepiidae in the collections of the Western Australian Museum was the next significant study. He reported the species of Sepia from Western Australia, among them three new species; he also included two species from eastern Australia.
Interest in cephalopod fisheries, and especially in squid fisheries, in Australia in the late 1970's stimulated the increased research effort on Australian cephalopods. A consequence of this increased interest and awareness of the importance of cephalopods in the marine ecosystem, resulted in active expansion of cephalopod collections in institutions. Since 1979, many papers on Australian cephalopods have been published. In 1985, Lu and Phillips published an annotated checklist of cephalopods from Australian waters, the first comprehensive checklist since Brazier's 1892 checklist. These authors listed 222 nominal species, in 35 families and 62 genera, and including four Nautilus species, 80 sepioid species, 15 myopsid squid species, 78 oegopsid squid species, 44 octopod species and the monotypic Vampyroteuthis infernalis. Many more articles on the Australian coleoid fauna have been published (for example: Lu (1982); Lu & Dunning (1982); Tait (1982); Lu & Tait (1983); Lu et al. (1985); Lu & Phillips (1985); Dunning (1988a, 1988b); Lu & Stranks (1991); Stranks (1988a, 1988b, 1990); Roper & Hochberg (1987, 1988); Zeidler & Norris (1990); Stranks & Lu (1991); Norman (1991, 1992a, 1992b, 1993a, 1993b, 1993c); Dunning et al. (1994); Lu (1998); Reid (2000)). Such active research and publication are likely to continue for some time.
The Australian marine fauna is considered to comprise two distinct latitudinal elements separated by zones of intermixing. These faunal regions were designated by Wilson & Gillet (1971) as the Northern Australian Region, Southern Australian Region and Eastern and Western Overlapping zones. The Northern Australian Region is part of the Indo-west Pacific Faunal Region and is characterised by high species diversity and large numbers of species with wide distributions in the Indian and Western Pacific Oceans. The fauna of the Southern Australian Region is characterised by low diversity and high species endemicity. The Overlap zones are long stretches of coast between the Northern and Southern Regions; there is a gradual replacement of tropical forms with temperate forms, and some local endemism (Wilson & Allen 1987).
The Australian neritic coleoid fauna generally conforms to this distributional pattern and includes representatives of the families Sepiidae, Sepiolidae, Idiosepiidae, Sepiadariidae, Loliginidae and Octopodidae.
The distributional pattern of pelagic cephalopods is less clear-cut. Although data are only preliminary, a latitudinal gradient in species diversity, such as observed in the Eastern North Atlantic Ocean (Clarke & Lu 1974, 1975; Lu & Clarke 1975a, 1975b), is not evident. This impression is supported also by Nesis' (1979) interpretations of pelagic cephalopod data, upon which basis he classified the pelagic realm of the Australian-New Zealand region into equatorial, southern subtropical, peripheral, notal and Antarctic zones. Only the first four zones are present in the Australian Fishing Zone (AFZ)— the Antarctic zone lies outside the AFZ. The equatorial and the southern subtropical zones encompass the entire eastern, western and northern waters, while the peripheral zone encompasses the Great Australian Bight region, including Tasmania. The notal zone comes close to the south-western corner of Australia but largely lies outside of AFZ (Nesis 1979: fig. 3).
The broad distributional ranges of many species have resulted in a diffuse pattern with respect to the latitudinal gradient in species diversity. The southward flow of both the warm Leeuwin Current in the west and the warm East Australian Current in the east (see Bunt 1987) also are contributing factors. The Leeuwin Current flows eastward around Cape Leeuwin, bringing warm, tropical water to the Great Australian Bight and supporting a tropical marine fauna in the Bight (Maxwell & Cresswell 1981). The East Australian Current flows east at around 33°S, where warm-core anticyclonic eddies are formed by pinching off the East Australian Current and continue southward to as far south as 40°S. Brandt (1983) suggested that these eddies may be responsible for the large-scale patchiness in pelagic distribution in the western Tasman Sea. The eddies may carry tropical species beyond their normal range. A juvenile Spirula spirula taken in the zooplankton off south-eastern Tasmania (44°05.6'S 147°58.6'E) and juvenile Sthenoteuthis off Bass Strait (Dunning 1988c) may be examples (Lu, unpublished data).
Records of Australian coleoid fossils are few. The family Bolemnidae is represented by several Dimitobelus species from the Cretaceous in South Australia (Ludbrook 1966). Fossils of Spirulirostra curta (Family Spirulirostridae) have been collected from the Muddy Creek Formation (Middle Miocene, Balcombian) in Torquay (NMV collection), and of Notosepia cliftonensis (Family Sepiidae) from the Balcombian in Dingley and Hamilton, Victoria (NMV collection). Muensterella tonii Wade of the extinct order of Kelaenida Starobogatov and fossil vampyromorphs, Boreopeltis soniae Wade and Trachyteuthis willisi Wade of the families Plesioteuthidae and Trachyteuthidae, respectively, have been reported from Queensland (Wade 1993).
The project was supported by a grant from the Australian Biological Resources Study (ABRS) which is gratefully acknowledged. I am indebted to Alice Wells and Keith Houston for editorial advice and good humour and patience during the long drawn out period of preparation. I am also indebted to Malcolm Dunning who patiently read the manuscript, noted many errors and provided many suggestions.
The Curators and Collection Managers of cephalopod collections in all Australian museums, as well as Mike Sweeney of the Division of Mollusks of the Smithsonian Institution, have tirelessly and patiently responded to all my requests for loans of specimens or information. I am indebted to them all.
I thank Val Hogan, Frank Job and Sandra Winchester of the Library of the Musuem of Victoria who tirelessly assisted with location of many obscure references needed for the project and obtained necessary references through numerous interlibrary loans. Without their help it would have been impossible to complete the project.
I am indebted to my many friends and colleagues, notably, Sue Boyd, Malcolm Dunning, Robyn Ickeringill, Mandy Reid, and Chris Rowley, who have answered many of my requests for information on specimens or literature.
Introductory remarks for each family in this section are largely abbreviated versions of the family treatments in Chaper 13, Subclass Coleoidea, of the Fauna of Australia Volume 5. I thank my good friend and colleague, Malcolm Dunning for agreeing to let me rely so heavily on the teuthid section that he authored.
In the early stages of the project, Margaret Blackburn and later Timothy Stranks were employed to enter data. Their efforts are acknowledged.
The information on the Australian Faunal Directory site for the Cephalopoda is derived from the Zoological Catalogue of Australia database compiled on the Platypus software program. It incorporates a few minor changes made to the work published on 2 July 2001 as
Taxa are arranged alphabetically. Synonyms are arranged in chronological order and only those relevant to Australian records are considered.
All type specimens housed in Australian institutions have been examined for verification of data. Information on types deposited in museums outside Australia is based mostly on published data from the original publications or derived from the following type catalogues: Kristensen & Knudson (1983), Lu et al. (1995), and Sweeney & Roper (1998). Several recent publications that have been very useful and have been drawn upon heavily are Lu (1998), Lu & Dunning (1998) and Sweeney & Roper (1998).
No common names are given in this work, but common names of cephalopods are used in the Internet database, CephBase.
Minor changes were made in January 2007, following the publication, Groves et al. (2006).
Distribution data in the Directory is by political and geographic region descriptors and serves as a guide to the distribution of a taxon. For details of a taxon's distribution, the reader should consult the cited references (if any) at genus and species levels.
Australia is defined as including Lord Howe Is., Norfolk Is., Cocos (Keeling) Ils, Christmas Is., Ashmore and Cartier Ils, Macquarie Is., Australian Antarctic Territory, Heard and McDonald Ils, and the waters associated with these land areas of Australian political responsibility. Political areas include the adjacent waters.
Terrestrial geographical terms are based on the drainage systems of continental Australia, while marine terms are self explanatory except as follows: the boundary between the coastal and oceanic zones is the 200 m contour; the Arafura Sea extends from Cape York to 124 DEG E; and the boundary between the Tasman and Coral Seas is considered to be the latitude of Fraser Island, also regarded as the southern terminus of the Great Barrier Reef.
Distribution records, if any, outside of these areas are listed as extralimital. The distribution descriptors for each species are collated to genus level. Users are advised that extralimital distribution for some taxa may not be complete.
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Allan, J. 1945. Planktonic cephalopod larvae from the eastern Australian coast. Records of the Australian Museum 21: 317-350 pls 24-27
Berry, S.S. 1918. Report on the Cephalopoda obtained by the F.I.S. Endeavour in the Great Australian Bight and other southern Australian localities. Biological Results of the Fishing Experiments carried on by the F.I.S. Endeavour 1909-1914 4: 203-298 pls 59-88
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Boyle, P.R. (ed.) 1987. Cephalopod Life Cycles. Vol. 2. Comparative Reviews. London : Academic Press xxi 441 pp.
Brandt, S.B. 1983. Pelagic squid associations with a warm-core eddy of the East Australian Current. Australian Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research 34: 573-585
Brazier, J. 1892. Catalogue of the Marine Shells of Australia and Tasmania. Pt I. Cephalopoda; Pt II. Pteropoda. Sydney : Australian Museum Catalogue Vol. 15 42 pp.
Bunt, J.S. 1987. The Australian marine environment. pp. 17-42 in Dyne, G.R. & Walton, D.W. (eds). Fauna of Australia General Articles. Canberra : Australian Government Publishing Service Vol. 1A.
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Clarke, M.R. & Lu, C.C. 1975. Vertical distribution of cephalopods at 18°N, 25°W in the North Atlantic. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom 55: 165-182
Cotton, B.C. 1929. Contributions to the fauna of Rottnest Island. 4. Western Australian Sepiidae. Journal of the Royal Society of Western Australia 15: 87-94 pls 14-16
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Dunning, M. 1988b. First records of Nototodarus hawaiiensis (Berry, 1912) (Cephalopoda: Ommstrephidae) from northern Australia with a reconsideration of the identity of N. sloani philippinensis Voss, 1962. Memoirs of Museum Victoria 49(1): 159-168
Dunning, M. 1988c. Distribution and comparative life history studies of deepwater squid of the family Ommastrephidae in Australasian waters Unpublished PhD Thesis, University of Queensland 288 pp.
Dunning, M., McKinnon, S., Lu, C.C., Yeatman, J. & Cameron, D. 1994. Demersal cephalopods of the Gulf of Carpentaria. Australian Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research 45: 351-374
Gray, J.E. 1849. Catalogue of the Mollusca in the Collection of the British Museum. 1. Cephalopoda Antepedia. London : British Museum (Natural History) 164 pp.
Grove, S.J., Kershaw, R.C., Smith, B.J. & Turner, E. 2006. A Systematic List of the Marine Molluscs of Tasmania. Launceston, Tasmania : Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery 120 pp.
Gulland, J.A. (ed.) 1971. The Fish Resources of the Ocean. West Byfleet : Fishing News Books xi 255 pp.
Hoyle, W.E. 1886. Report on the Cephalopoda collected by H.M.S. Challenger during the years 1873–76. Report on the Scientific Results of the Voyage of H.M.S. Challenger 1873–1876, Zoology 16(44): 1-245 pls 1-33
Iredale, T. 1926. The cuttlefish 'bones' of the Sydney beaches (Phylum Mollusca–Class Cephalopoda). The Australian Zoologist 4: 186-196 pls 22, 23
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Iredale, T. 1954. Cuttlefish 'bones' again. The Australian Zoologist 12: 63-82 pls 4, 5
Kristensen, T.K. & Knudsen, J. 1983. A catalogue of the type specimens of Cephalopoda (Mollusca) in the Zoological Museum, University of Copenhagen. Steenstrupia 9(10): 217-227
Lesueur, C.A. 1821. Descriptions of several new species of cuttlefish. Journal of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia 2: 86-101
Lu, C.C. 1982. First record of Todaropsis eblanae (Ball, 1841) (Cephalopoda: Oegopsida) in the Pacific Ocean. Venus 4: 67-70
Lu, C.C. 1998a. A synopsis of Sepiidae in Australian waters (Sepioidea: Cephalopoda). Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology 586: 159-190
Lu, C.C. 1998b. The use of sepion in the taxonomy of Sepiidae (Cephalopoda: Sepioidea) with an emphasis on the Australian fauna. Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology (586): 207-222
Lu, C.C. 2001. Cephalopoda. pp. 129-308 in Wells, A. & Houston, W.W.K (eds). Zoological Catalogue of Australia. Vol. 17.2. Mollusca: Aplacophora, Polyplacophora, Scaphopoda, Cephalopoda. Melbourne : CSIRO Publishing, Australia xii 353 pp.
Lu, C.C., Boucher-Rodoni, R. & Tillier, A. 1995. Catalogue of types of recent of Cephalopoda in the Muséum national d'histoire naturelle (France). Bulletin du Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle. Paris 17 4(sec. A, (3–4)): 307-343
Lu, C.C., Roper, C.F.E. & Tait, R.W. 1985. A revision of Loliolus (Cephalopoda; Loliginidae), including L. noctiluca, a new species of squid from Australian waters. Proceedings of the Royal Society of Victoria 97: 59-85
Lu, C.C. & Clarke, M.R. 1975a. Vertical distribution of cephalopods at 40°N, 53°N and 60°N at 20°W in the North Atlantic. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom 55: 143-163
Lu, C.C. & Clarke, M.R. 1975b. Vertical distribution of cephalopods at 11°N, 20°W in the North Atlantic. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom 55: 369-389
Lu, C.C. & Dunning, M. 1982. Identification guide to Australian arrow squid (Family Ommastrephidae). Victorian Institute of Marine Science, Technical Report 2: 1-30
Lu, C.C. & Dunning, M.C. 1998. Subclass Coleoidea Bather, 1888. pp. 499-563 in Beesley, P.L., Ross, G.J.B. & Wells, A. (eds). Mollusca: The Southern Synthesis. Fauna of Australia. Melbourne : CSIRO Publishing Vol. 5(Part A) pp. xvi, 1-563.
Lu, C.C. & Phillips, J.U. 1985. An annotated checklist of Cephalopoda from Australian waters. Occasional Papers of the Museum of Victoria 2: 21-36
Lu, C.C. & Stranks, T.N. 1991. Eledone palari, a new species of octopus (Cephalopoda: Octopodidae) from Australia. Bulletin of Marine Science 1–2: 73-87
Lu, C.C. & Tait, R.W. 1983. Taxonomic studies on Sepioteuthis Blainville (Cephalopoda: Loliginidae) from the Australian region. Proceedings of the Royal Society of Victoria 95: 181-204
Ludbrook, N.H. 1966. Cretaceous biostratigraphy of the Great Artesian Basin in South Australia. Bulletin of the Geological Survey of South Australia 30: 1-223 28 pls
Maxwell, J.G.H. & Cresswell, G.R. 1981. Dispersal of tropical marine fauna to the Great Australian Bight by the Leeuwin Current. Australian Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research 32: 493-500
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Norman, M.D. 1992a. Systematics and biogeography of the shallow-water octopuses (Cephalopoda: Octopodidae) of the Great Barrier Reef, Australia Unpublished PhD Thesis, University of Melbourne, Melbourne 281 pp. pls & figs.
Norman, M.D. 1992b. Ameloctopus litoralis, gen. et sp. nov. (Cephalopoda: Octopodidae), a new shallow-water octopus from tropical Australian waters. Invertebrate Taxonomy 6: 567-582
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