Jet propulsion in squids is used primarily as an escape response and most often occurs entirely under water. In many species of squid, however, the propulsive force is sufficient to launch the squid completely out of the water, after which it may fly or glide for some distance. Some researchers do not use the term ‘fly’, but prefer the term ‘gliding’.
Posts tagged squid
To investigate the molecular bases of cephalopod brain and body innovations, we sequenced the genome and multiple transcriptomes of the California two-spot octopus, Octopus bimaculoides. We found no evidence for hypothesized whole-genome duplications in the octopus lineage. The core developmental and neuronal gene repertoire of the octopus is broadly similar to that found across invertebrate bilaterians, except for massive expansions in two gene families previously thought to be uniquely enlarged in vertebrates: the protocadherins, which regulate neuronal development, and the C2H2 superfamily of zinc-finger transcription factors.
Despite its status as the largest invertebrate on the planet, no one had ever seen, much less photographed, a live giant squid in its habitat until 2004. On September 30, at precisely 9:15 A.M., near Japan’s Ogasawara Islands, a 26-foot-long giant squid attacked a baitline that Dr. Tsunemi Kubodera and his research team had rigged with a strobe and a digital camera, timed to snap an image every 30 seconds. Within days, cephalogeeks all over the Web were posting links to astonishing photographs of the animal vrooming up out of the deep and grabbing the bait “in much the same way that pythons rapidly envelop their prey within [their] coils…immediately after striking,” as the researchers put it.
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