Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the UK

A revision of the family Stauroteuthidae (Octopoda: Cirrata) with redescriptions of Stauroteuthis syrtensis and S. gilchristi

Martin A.  Collins a1c1 and Camila  Henriques a1
a1 Department of Zoology, University of Aberdeen, Tillydrone Avenue, Aberdeen, AB24 2TZ, U.K.


The cirrate octopod family Stauroteuthidae is revised on the basis of new material collected from the North and South Atlantic and a thorough examination of relevant type material. The family is characterized by the presence of a secondary web, U-shaped shell vestige, reduced mantle aperture and with long cirri, not reaching the arm tips. The radula is absent. The family contains a single genus with two valid species, Stauroteuthis syrtensis and S. gilchristi, which are redescribed based on the holotypes and new material. Chunioteuthis ebersbachii is a junior synonym of S. syrtensis and C. gilchristi is placed in the genus Stauroteuthis. The genus Chunioteuthis is no longer valid. The form and arrangement of suckers distinguish the two species of Stauroteuthis. Stauroteuthis syrtensis is broadly distributed in the North Atlantic at depths of 700—4000 m with peak abundance at 1500—2500 m. Stauroteuthis gilchristi is known only from the type locality off Cape Town (2604 m) and from new material captured off South Georgia (1000 m).

(Received August 18 1999)
(Accepted April 28 2000)

c1 E-mail: