Haliphron atlanticus

The giant octopus Haliphron atlanticus (Mollusca: Octopoda) in New Zealand waters


Steve's made available a copy of his manuscript on the giant gelatinous octopus (Haliphron atlanticus) from New Zealand for anyone to read and comment on if they are so inclined. He's done this as a number of TONMO.com members have requested more information on this animal.

The manuscript has not been peer reviewed, and as such the final manuscript is likely to change. Nevertheless, it must not be copied or distributed, nor referred to outside of the TONMO community as Steve stands to have the paper disqualified from publication (strictly speaking the manuscript must not appear on the open Internet!). I trust that people will be responsible.

Click here to discuss this manuscript on our forums.

National Institute
of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA)
P.O. Box 14-901 Kilbirnie
Wellington, New Zealand

Haliphron atlanticus Steenstrup, 1861 (= Alloposus mollis Verrill, 1880) is reported from New Zealand waters on the basis of a single specimen of giant proportions caught recently by fisheries trawl off the eastern Chatham Rise. This specimen, the largest of this species and of all octopods, proves to be the first validated record of Haliphronfrom the South Pacific. Although extensively damaged, details of its morphology and anatomy are described.

Mollusca, Octopoda, Haliphron atlanticus, Alloposidae, New Zealand.

Photos and Illustrations

Figs. 1, 2
: Fresh (prefix, post thaw) whole Haliphron animal

Haliphron atlanticus: Fresh...
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About the Author
Steve O'Shea
Steve is an expert in the systematics and biogeography of cephalopods, and joined the TONMO.com staff in June 2002. He can be seen on the Discovery Channel documentary, Chasing Giants: On the Trail of the Giant Squid. For more information, see his Autobiography and Select Bibliography (2003). Dr. O'Shea lives in New Zealand.


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