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Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History
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Roper, C.F.E. and M. Vecchione

1996
In situ observations on Brachioteuthis beanii Verrill:paired behavior, probably mating (Cephalopoda, Oegopsida).
American Malacological Bulletin 13:55-60.

ABSTRACT: A behavior that has never been seen in cephalopods was observedthree times in a large aggregation of Brachioteuthis beanii Verrill, 1881. During a series of submersible dives off Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, eastern U.S., three pairs of Brachioteuthis were seen, and one pair was video-taped. In all three pairs one squid grasped the other by the posterior mantle in its arm crown. This paired behavior involved brief periods in which the grasped squid bent its head and body posteriorly and vigorously moved its arms around the head and mantle opening of the grasping squid. Although we were unable to capture any of the coupling pairs to determine their stage of maturity, we believe this unusual activity represents mating behavior.

Brachioteuthis beanii Brachioteuthis beanii was observed on five of the 15 dives at depths of 500 m, 700 m, two at 800 m , and 860 m. One specimen was captured in a midwater trawl, which enabled us to verify the specific identification. Individuals and aggregations occurred from about 5-60 m above the bottom.
Brachioteuthis beanii 1. AVI video (1,411 Kb) or MPEG video (730 Kb)

Brachioteuthis beanii Typical coupling behavior of Brachioteuthis beanii, showing posterior squid grasping anterior squid; anterior squid waving arms and writhing.
Brachioteuthis beanii 2. AVI video (1,392 Kb) or MPEG video (751 Kb)

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