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Enoploteuthis leptura (Leach 1817)

Kotaro Tsuchiya
Containing group: Enoploteuthis


Enoploteuthis leptura, the largest species for the family, attains 150mm DML. This was the first species described in the genus but was originally placed in Loligo. It is designated the type species for the present genus. It is broadly distributed in the tropical to warm temperate oceans of the world.


  1. Tentacle
    1. Tentacle short, narrow.
    2. Carpal cluster elongate.
    3. Two rows of subequal-sized hooks on manus.
    4. Two rows of suckers on dactylus.
  2. Hectocotylus
    1. Hectocotylus with a large truncate membranous flap on the ventral edge.
    2. Modified portion with armature.
  3. Integumental Photophores
    1. Ventral mantle with six longitudinal but weakly oblique stripes of integumental organs; ventralmost pair of stripes is obscure and fused to lateral rows; narrow photophore-less strip at the midline.
    2. Ventral head with four longitudinal stripes of integumental organs which connected in each side forming ring-like.
    3. Ventral side of arm III with a row of organs along almost entire arm.


Nesis (1982/87) separated the Indo-Pacific form as a new subspecies E. leptura magnoceani by the photophore arrangement of anterior ventral mantle, but it is difficult to separate.

Life history

Age and growth

Based on statolith increments, E. leptura in Gulf of Guinea shows early maturation of males (at age 45-60 days) and females (at 80-90 days). Maximum age is 153 days in mature males of 72 mm DML, and 143 days in mature females of 92 mm DML (Arkhipkin, 1994).


In the Gulf of Guinea, two peaks of spawning were recognized between January and September (Arkhipkin, 1994).


Geographical distribution

This species was first described from the North Atlantic. this species seems to be distributed in the tropical to warm temperate waters of the world (Roper, 1966; Nesis, 1982/87).


Arkhipkin, A.I., Age, growth and maturation of the squid Enoploteuthis leptura (Oegopsida: Enoploteuthidae) form the central-east Atlantic. Journal of Molluscan Studies, 60:1-8.

Nesis, K. N. 1982. Abridged key to the cephalopod mollusks of the world's ocean. 385+ii pp. Light and Food Industry Publishing House, Moscow. (In Russian.). Translated into English by B. S. Levitov, ed. by L. A. Burgess (1987), Cephalopods of the world. T. F. H. Publications, Neptune City, NJ, 351pp.

Roper, C.F.E., 1966. A study of the genus Enoloteuthis (Cephalopoda: Oegopsida) in the Atlantic Ocean with a description of the type species, E. leptura (Leach, 1817). Dana Report, 66:1-46.

Title Illustrations

Enoploteuthis leptura, from Northwest Pacific, from Tsuchiya (2000), size, male.

Other illustrations

Copyright © 2000 K. Tsuchiya
About This Page

Tokyo University of Fisheries, Konan, Minato, Tokyo

Citing this page:

Tsuchiya, Kotaro. 2000. Enoploteuthis leptura (Leach 1817). Version 01 January 2000 (under construction). http://tolweb.org/Enoploteuthis_leptura/19710/2000.01.01 in The Tree of Life Web Project, http://tolweb.org/

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