Southern Pygmy Squid
Pygmy squids are the smallest of all the Cephalopods. The order Idiosepida (and family Idiosepiidae) is represented by a single genus. Seven species have been described (five from the western Pacific Ocean and two from South Africa).
Xipholeptos notoides can be recognised by the rounded fins at the end of the body and the short white lines around the eyes. Their colour pattern is typically yellow to brown. The anterior edge of the mantle is not fused to the head, and males have more than 10 suckers on each of the modified lower arms.
X. notoides is abundant in seagrass beds in bays and inlets.
Southwestern Pacific; southern and eastern Australia. From southern Queensland to the midcoast of Western Australia.
Feeding and diet
X. notoides ambushes many of the small crustaceans that share their habitat, by using the glue gland on their body to hide under seagrass leaves. These squid rapidly approach shrimp from behind, and bite through the nerve cord to immobilise them.
Pygmy Squids mate by the male adhering spermatophores to the female typically below the mouth, but also on the head, arms and body. Females use this sperm to fertilise round eggs which are glued singly or in clumps on the underside of seagrass.
- Jereb, P., & C.F.E Roper (eds) (2005) Cephalopods of the World: Chambered Nautiluses and Sepioids, Food & Agriculture Organization of the United Nations Catalogue for Fishery Purposes, Rome, No. 4, Vol. 1
- Norman, M., (2000) Cephalopods- A World Guide, ConchBooks, Germany (Hackenheim)
- Norman, M & A. Reid., (2000) A Guide to Squid, Cuttlefish and Octopuses of Australasia, CSIRO Publishing, Victoria (Collingwood)