Fast Facts

  • Classification
    Species
    · austrinum
    Genus
    · Sepiadarium
    Family
    Sepiadariidae
    Order
    Sepiolida
    Subclass
    Coleoidea
    Class
    Cephalopoda
    Phylum
    Mollusca
  • Size Range
    Bodies up to 4cm long.

The main defence of this species is the production of copious amounts of slime from glands on the underside of the mantle - the composition of which is unknown.

Identification

Sepiadarium austrinum have a pair of kidney shaped fins on the mantle. Their colour ranges – from typically clear with large white leucophore spots to a uniform bright yellow or orange.

Habitat

Most commonly found shallow, sheltered waters in sandy habitats.

Distribution

Southern Australia; a small known distribution in and around the Spencer Gulf.

Feeding and diet

S. austrinum emerge at dusk to feed over sand and near seagrass beds on small fish and crustaceans - particularly benthic isopods.

Breeding behaviours

Both sexes mate from an early stage with immature females able to store sperm in a pouch below their mouth. Mating is performed head to head and the male passes sperm packages into the pouch below the female’s mouth, where they are able to store the sperm. The male uses a special ribbed arm to scoop out any previous suitor’s sperm.

References

  • Jereb, P., & C.F.E Roper (eds) (2005) Cephalopods of the World: Chambered Nautiluses and Sepioids, Food & Agriculture Organization of the United Nations Catalogue for Fishery Purposes, Rome, No. 4, Vol. 1
  • Norman, M., (2000) Cephalopods- A World Guide, ConchBooks, Germany (Hackenheim)
  • Norman, M & A. Reid., (2000) A Guide to Squid, Cuttlefish and Octopuses of Australasia, CSIRO Publishing, Victoria (Collingwood)