Antarctic Squid

By Madeline Price

Description

Squid are a diverse group of invertebrates (animal with no backbone) and ranges in size from barely two and a half centimetres to a total length approaching 18 metres.

The largest invertebrate in the world is the giant squid, which can grow to 15 m. Squid are arrow shaped and have ten tenticals. They have the ability to change colour when exited, though they generally have a whitish hue. Wild squid live for about 3-5 years.

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Habitat

Both the Colossal Squid and the giant squid are found in the oceans near Antarctica. They are able to survive in these extremely cold temperatures. Here they can grow to be very large as they don’t have any predators but sharks.

Diet

The giant squids feed on other squids and large fish that swim alongside them in the ocean's depths.

Squids most commonly eat fish, crustaceans and other squids.

Predators

The only known predators of the giant squid are sperm whales, but pilot whale may also feed on them. Young squids are preyed on by deep-sea sharks and other fish.

Breeding

Most squid complete their life cycle – from tiny planktonic babies to mature adults – in approximately one year. After spawning the egg they die, then float to the surface or sinking to the bottom where they become important dietary items for sea birds such as albatrosses.

WILD LIFE STATUS: LEAST CONSERN

Adaptations

Squid have torpedo-shaped bodies, like rockets, that make them extremely aerodynamic. Like their octopus cousins, squid produce ink and keep it in an ink sac near their rectum. When threatened, squid can expel this ink in the face of a predator, confusing it and allowing it escape. Squids have 10 tentacles coming out from the base of their torpedo-bodies. All of these arms are lined with suction cups, usually with small hooks embedded in their centers. Squids have powerful beaks, like parrot beaks, centered at the base of their heads in between their tentacles. These beaks are extremely powerful.
Behaviour

For a treat here is a video about the Squids behaviour. Nothing is really known about the squids behavious that are very secretive animals. There are two videos.

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