(ORDO NEWS) — Scientists from the SQUID community have finally succeeded in something that has never been possible before. Namely, to find one of the most elusive cephalopods – the legendary squid “Sheep Horn” (Spirula spirula).
The strange squid-like cephalopod has finally been captured on camera in its natural habitat. Ram’s Horn Squid has not yet been officially found in the wild. That said, their tiny shells are common on beaches around the world.
Incredibly, this is indeed the first ever sighting of a living Spirula, also known as the Horn squid, in a natural environment. To find it, a team of researchers from the Schmidt Ocean Institute sent a remotely controlled submarine into the depths of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.
As a result, an hour-long video streamed live on YouTube, about 13 minutes later, allowed a teasing look at this squid to be seen. Oceanologists initially had no idea what they were looking at until the 7cm squid successfully debuted at camera sight.
The bizarre creature boasts bulging eyes, eight limbs, and two tentacles. The data show that the elusive creature was officially discovered at a depth of 850 meters below the surface, almost at the very limit where sunlight cannot penetrate.
Scientists now know that under its cylindrical outer body is a shell with gas chambers to keep the squid afloat.
The Schmidt Oceanic Institute happily shared their findings on Twitter:
“We are incredibly lucky that we were able to see these creatures, they have many extinct relatives, but what we see is a living representative of the Spirulina genus, the Spirulidae family and the Spirulida order.”
Cuttlefish and squid of this type are extremely interesting objects to study, due to the fact that they are the only known creatures on planet Earth that have such an internal shell with chambers for buoyancy. The way these squids navigate underwater now makes scientists question everything they thought they knew.
In aquariums, caught squid often swim with their heads down. However, in a video released this week, the squid is seen to be doing the exact opposite. Zoologist Michael Vecchione made a statement on this matter:
“Many oceanographers are now literally going crazy because their heads are up. And the reason they worry is because the shell, with its buoyancy, is on the other end of the squid. So you might think that the head that is heavier will hang down.”
Another final mystery surrounding these squid remains unresolved. This is due to the ink that these squids left after they sailed away. Perhaps this is some kind of protective reaction of the body.
Contact us: [email protected]