Under Construction
This is an archived version of a Tree of Life page. For up-to-date information, please refer to the current version of this page.

Asperoteuthis mangoldae Young, Vecchione and Roper, 2007

Richard E. Young, Michael Vecchione, and Clyde F. E. Roper
Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window
Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window
Containing group: Asperoteuthis


Asperoteuthis mangoldae (first known as Asperoteuthis sp. A on this page) is very gelatinous, with about the same consistency as Grimalditeuthis bonplandi. It has elongate ventral arms in small squid, but these get relatively short in large squid. It lacks the tubercles and elongate fins of A. acanthoderma.

Brief diagnosis:

An Asperoteuthis ...


  1. Arms
    1. Largest arm suckers with 6-10 truncated teeth on distal half of ring.
    2. Arms without enlarged suckers; largest suckers in proximal half of arm with sucker size slowly decreasing distally; arms I-III with suckers of comparable size, arms IV with distinctively smaller suckers.

  2. Tentacles
    1. Suckers with ca. 8 large, truncated teeth on distal half of inner ring grading to ca. 17 small, truncated teeth on proximal half.
    2. Club with very broad proximal protective membrane and long terminal papilla.
      Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window
      Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window

      Figure. Aboral (top) and oral (bottom) views of the tentacular club of A. mangoldae, NMNH 729749, holotype. Drawing by A. Hart.

  3. Head
    1. Beaks: Descriptions can be found here: Lower beak; upper beak.

  4. Funnel
    1. funnel-locking apparatus oval with a rounded ridge in the midline (tragus?) and an elongate, deep, curving groove laterally; mantle locking component with matching curved ridge. Antitragus absent.
      Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window
      Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window

      Figure. Frontal views of the funnel-mantle locking apparatus of A. mangoldae. Left - Funnel (left) and mantle (right) components, NMNH 729752. Drawings by A. Hart. Right - Funnel (left) and mantle (right) components, 100 mm ML, mature male, paratype, stained with methylene blue. Photographs by R. Young.

  5. Mantle
    1. Mantle and other integument without tubercles.

  6. Fins
    1. Fin length 40% of ML.
    2. Fin width approximately equals fin length.

  7. Photophores
    1. Club-tip photophore small, terminal papilla large.
    2. Small embedded photophores present on aboral surface of club.
    3. Ventral eyeball photophore present.
    4. Luminescent pads present on tentacle stalks.


More details of the description can be found here.

A. mangoldae apparently possesses a large secondary tail but a specimen with an attached tail has not been captured.

Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window
Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window

Figure. The drawing is a reconstruction based on the collection of a damaged tail in the same tow with a small (80 mm ML) A. mangoldae. The tail did not match the broken end of the gladius from the specimen indicating that a piece of the tail was missing. Tentacular clubs missing from specimen, added to drawing. Drawing by A. Hart.

Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window
Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window

Figure. The photograph shows the tail of a large Asperoteuthis from the same locality and possibly belonging to a large A. mangoldae although the shape differs greatly from that of the small specimen above.

Very few A. mangoldae have been captured with the clubs attached as the long, thin tentacles are easily broken off during capture. With tentacles missing, it can be confused with Grimalditeuthis bomplandi in its general shape and consistency. However, many differences easily separate them including presence of the funnel-mantle fusion and three large papillae on each arm-sucker base in G. bomplandi.

In addition to the features listed in the Diagnosis, A. mangoldae differs from A. acanthoderma in (1) the weaker consistency of the arms and mantle, (2) the dentition of the arm (6-10 vs 3-4) and club (25 vs 9 teeth) suckers, (3) the smaller and more circular terminal club photophore, (4) the longer terminal papilla on the club and (5) the broader fins (width ca 115% of length vs ca 75% of length). In addition, the club suckers of A. acanthoderma are on shorter stalks, the sucker rings are more elongated in the oral-aboal directiion and suckers of arms IV are more densely packed.

Life History

Paralarvae of A. mangoldae from off Hawaii have been described by Young, 1991. At the time that work was completed only one species was thought to occur in these waters. We now know that two species of Asperoteuthis occur there (A. acanthoderma and A. mangoldae (personal observation) althouth the latter is far more abundant. As a result, the identity of these paralarvae is uncertain, however, based on relative abundance we assume they belong to A. mangoldae. The young stages are very similar to those of Chiroteuthis picteti in the virtual lack of a brachial pillar and the centrally located esophagus. It differs, however, by:

  1. a chromatophore on the oral surface of each tentacle base
  2. the greater number of arm suckers
  3. more numerous dorsal brachial pillar vesicles
  4. the lack of a groove in the funnel cartilage
  5. the dorsally elongate vesiculate area on the mantle (at 6 mm ML)

At larger sizes the triangular shape of the dorsal-mantle, vesiculate area, the more circular shape of the combined fins and the straight funnel locking-cartilage are diagnostic. In the large paralarvae (i.e.,  ca. 27 mm ML) the adult club begins to appear on the tentacle stalk and the bare proximal region is denoted by the broader protective membrane in this area.

In larger paralarvae the elongate vesiculate area on the dorsal mantle is the diagnostic feature most easliy recognized.

Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window
Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window

Figure. A. mangoldae paralarvae. Thumbnail (far left) - Ventral views showing relative sizes of the two paralarvae. Left - Ventral and dorsal views, 4.2 mm ML. Middle - Ventral and dorsal views, 19 mm ML. Right - Oral view of the tentacular club, 27 mm ML, with a typical primary doratopsid club (the distal expanded region with large suckers). The developing adult club is seen proximal to the doratopsid club on the tentacular stalk. This consists of a distal region with virtually no protective membranes and small suckers, and a proximal region with narrow protective membranes and no suckers. The developing adult club, therefore, shows the beginning of the features characteristic of the subadult.  Scale bars = 1mm. Drawings from Young (1991).


Vertical distribution

Off Hawaii eight specimens were captured during a study to examine the vertical distribution of cephalopods. All specimens were captured during the day at depths between 775 and 975 m. The absence of captures in the heavily sampled waters from 0-400m depth at night suggests that this species is not a vertical migrator.

Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window
Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window

Figure. Vertical distribution chart of A. mangoldae. Captures were made with both open and opening/closing trawls. Bars - fishing depth-range of opening/closing trawl. Circle - Modal fishing depth for either trawl. Yellow-filled circles - Day capture.

Geographical distribution

Type locality: Hawaiian waters at 21°25'N, 158°20.5'W. The holotype was captured in an opening-closing trawl between 820 and 870 m depth during the day (1411-1616 hrs). This species is known only from the waters off the Hawaiian Islands. Both A. mangoldae and Asperoteuthis acanthoderma occur in these waters but A. mangoldae is much more abundant.


Young, R. E. 1978. Vertical distribution and photosensitive vesicles of pelagic cephalopods from Hawaiian waters. Fish. Bull., 76: 583-615.

Young, R. E., M. Vecchione and C. F. E. Roper. 2007. A new genus and three new species of decapodiform cephalopods (Mollusca: Cephalopoda). Rev. Fish. Biol. Fisheries, 17: 353-365.

Title Illustrations
Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window
Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window
Scientific Name Asperoteuthis mangoldae
Location Hawaiian waters
Creator A. D. Hart
Sex Male
Life Cycle Stage Immature
View Ventral
Size 80 mm ML
Collection NMNH 729752
Type Holotype
Copyright ©
About This Page

University of Hawaii, Honolulu, HI, USA

National Museum of Natural History, Washington, D. C. , USA

Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D. C., USA

Page: Tree of Life Asperoteuthis mangoldae Young, Vecchione and Roper, 2007. Authored by Richard E. Young, Michael Vecchione, and Clyde F. E. Roper. The TEXT of this page is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License - Version 3.0. Note that images and other media featured on this page are each governed by their own license, and they may or may not be available for reuse. Click on an image or a media link to access the media data window, which provides the relevant licensing information. For the general terms and conditions of ToL material reuse and redistribution, please see the Tree of Life Copyright Policies.

Citing this page:

Young, Richard E., Michael Vecchione, and Clyde F. E. Roper. 2016. Asperoteuthis mangoldae Young, Vecchione and Roper, 2007. Version 29 August 2016 (under construction). http://tolweb.org/Asperoteuthis_mangoldae/19467/2016.08.29 in The Tree of Life Web Project, http://tolweb.org/

edit this page
close box

This page is a Tree of Life Leaf Page.

Each ToL leaf page provides a synopsis of the characteristics of a group of organisms representing a leaf at the tip of the Tree of Life. The major distinction between a leaf and a branch of the Tree of Life is that a leaf cannot generally be further subdivided into subgroups representing distinct genetic lineages.

For a more detailed explanation of the different ToL page types, have a look at the Structure of the Tree of Life page.

close box

Asperoteuthis mangoldae

Page Content

articles & notes



Explore Other Groups

random page

  go to the Tree of Life home page