Rex/Dux?

Discussion in 'The Octopus' Den' started by Octomatt, Apr 4, 2003.

  1. Octomatt

    Octomatt O. bimaculoides Registered

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    Hi all...

    I've got a question that been bugging me for years and this might be just the forum to finally get it answered!

    Somewhere I once heard of an Archeteuthis species called Archeteuthis Rex. Is there actually such a creature? I was under the impression that this was the scientific term for teh Giant Squid, however, I've also heard it referred to as Archeteithis Dux. Is there a difference, and if so, what is it?
    :?:
    Thanks for reading and replying!

    Matt
     
  2. tonmo

    tonmo Titanites Staff Member Webmaster Moderator

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    Hi Matt,

    Welcome to TONMO.com!

    Hmm... I'm by no means the last authority on this subject (or the first, or in the middle, in fact), but to me Architeuthis Rex sounds like a name for a fanciful morphed beast, combining Architeuthis Dux and Tyrannosaurus Rex. I like the imagery... but wasn't able to find anything substantial written about such an idea when I did some quick looking... :?

    Side note, when I did a search on Google for Tyrannosaurus Rex, I got 66,600 results. *shudder*

    :shock:
     
  3. Octomatt

    Octomatt O. bimaculoides Registered

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    Thanks for checking, Tony! And thanks for the response. This one has been bugging me for years! I'm not sure where I first heard REX used, but it seems indeed to be bogus. I couldn't find anything on it either.

    Thanks again!

    Matt
     
  4. Steve O'Shea

    Steve O'Shea Colossal Squid Supporter

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    Tony, spot on - there's no such animal (squid) as Architeuthis rex (just A. dux, the duke).
    O
     
  5. Octomatt

    Octomatt O. bimaculoides Registered

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    Wow. Still in amazement that THE Steve O'Shea responded to my post. :shock:

    Gotta wonder though...a cross between the giant squid and the Tyranusaurus. Sounds fun to me! :lol:

    Matt
     
  6. Octomatt

    Octomatt O. bimaculoides Registered

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    Oh, and thanks for not pointing out my spelling atrocities...

    arch I teuthis. :P
     
  7. Tintenfisch

    Tintenfisch Architeuthis Staff Member Moderator

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    8)
     
  8. GeoffC

    GeoffC Cuttlefish Registered

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    :spongebo: Wow!

    OK dudes what an idea! A cross between a T.rex and a A.dux What in the wide world that would be like I do not know but the idea...!!! Cool!

    I've been away for a few weeks, I come back and suddenly there's double the members and a huge (one might almost say collosal) squid story - wow guys its AWE-SOME and then SOME!!

    PS I heard about it on Yahoo and their news guy must have read the NZ papers - it had the bit about dinner plate sized eyes and swivelling hooks but they seemed to keep a sense of proportion they restricted themselves to saying if you fell into the water with it 'you'd be in trouble' rather than 'if you live less than 50 storeys above ground you're dead meat'

    Thanks a bundle for the news Steve, d'ya think Mesonychoteuthis rather than Architeuthis is the origin of the old mariners tales? Or is it a case of Grogiteuthis brandiensis?

    Cheers - Geoff :meso:
     
  9. WhiteKiboko

    WhiteKiboko Colossal Squid Supporter Registered

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    Wow! i didnt know cephs and their fans were susceptable to the cocktail flu.... :cheers: how foolish could i have been? everyone knows the legend of the silly octopi... :)
     
  10. tomossan

    tomossan Blue Ring Registered

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    im not sure, but i think that if the collosal squid (:meso: RAR) had been responsile for the early tales their hooks (bladey things) would have featured heavily in reports, instead of just tentacle yarns....

    do you see where im coming from? i woudl think it would be a major part of reports, and i read somewhere else on Tonmo that :meso: ranged deeper than archi... maybe they dont coem to the surface as often (and even with an Archi its rare)

    i dont know, i am by NO means an expert, but reading that set me thinking :)

    :meso: RARARRARAR
     
  11. GeoffC

    GeoffC Cuttlefish Registered

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    Yep thats a fair point, I was running with the idea that old sea farers reports featured a large aggressive ceph, and here is one. But I guess if you live in low light conditions at depth then maybe you have to be well armed (no pun intended) and aggressive in order to get any prey item.

    :meso:
    indeed!


    PS WhiteKiboko wrote
    :squid: + :glass: = :meso:
     
  12. tomossan

    tomossan Blue Ring Registered

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    indeed you woudl have to be well armed; the immensity of the southern ocean is an incredibly hostile enviornment; with freezing water, and gigantic, well armed predators, i woudl think the meso's size and strength would be a necessity rather than an exception, if you see where oim coming from; once a creature became over a certain size, (perhaps 2 meters (?) ) they would become such a potential prey source that a larger size would be required in order to defend;

    perhaps, and this is really just flowing ideas, toothed whale and or saurian (early) agression was what prompted such an extreme enlargement in size. If, for instance, an early form of sperm whale often dived for squid, as a defence the squid would grow; forming, say, the architeuthis.... however their extra size in turn simply made it quicker and easier for the sperm whale to dive deep and eat a large meal... as such it dived more frequently, knowing (genetically) a huge, and more importantly singular (no hunting around!) food source wwas readily available....

    However, as the size did not always deflect the attention of the sperm whales, and in fact caused a greater dependance on them as a food source, the architeuthis has in part evolved into the meso, with an even larger size, and added defences....

    NOw this has been simply me wondering aloud, and id love some feedback; however note that the sperm whale thoughts could easily be interchanged with a species of marine dinosaur; i have no idea when architeuthis evolved, and i doubt there would be substantial fossil evidence of them, as fosilisation was a precarious enough process, without having to occur at thousands of feet under the sea! (also, even if it did occur, we would have no chance in hell of finding these fosssils :D)

    ok, ramble over.... and this is porbably going to be shot down immediately by one of the vastly knowledgable experts i know frequent these boards.... but i hope its food for thought :)
     
  13. ubiquity

    ubiquity Blue Ring Registered

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    i for one would love to see what someone with a touch more experience than myself would have to say about the points just brought up.
     
  14. Phil

    Phil Colossal Squid Supporter Registered

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    I would not be so sure! Have a look at this, details of an 80million year old giant squid:

    http://www.canadianrockhound.com/2001/01/cr0105108_squid.html

    This link has been posted here before but it was many months ago and you probably would not find it without trawling through the old message boards for hours.

    Interesting speculation about the size of these enormous squids being a response to predation. I wonder if fragments of these ancient squid will ever be found fossilised inside mosasaur stomach? I know the chances are a million to one, he said, but still..........
     
  15. ubiquity

    ubiquity Blue Ring Registered

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    hey that's great!
    any info on relations between prehistoric cephs and prehistoric whales?
     
  16. tomossan

    tomossan Blue Ring Registered

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    of course how stupid >.< i comepletely forgot about continental drift...

    DOH *feels a fool* :lol:
     
  17. tonmo

    tonmo Titanites Staff Member Webmaster Moderator

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    Alternatively, you could use the Message Board search feature (upper right corner) and try the word "fossil" and come up with it in a few minutes... :wink:

    http://www.tonmo.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=139&highlight=fossil
     
  18. GeoffC

    GeoffC Cuttlefish Registered

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    Maybe, but a lot of deep sea creatures seem to be slow moving and small. And I don't think it is known how deep Mesonychoteuthis lives. Also speed and camoflage are good alternatives to size increase as a means of defence, not to mention mimicry of something bigger and scarier. As to whales finding a good meal quicker, well the ocean is a big place and the larger you are, the fewer of you I guess there will be, so if you become a dedicated hunter of large squid then you need to be good at finding them (Dr O for example!!)

    However, I am not an expert either and I really have no idea about the dymnamics of ocean ecology which govern animal size. So maybe we need to lie in wait here until one of the vastly knowledgable experts known to frequent these waters swims by and then grapple them (with swivelling hooks perhaps?) Lets leave them some bait, aah-haargh! :wine:
     
  19. Phil

    Phil Colossal Squid Supporter Registered

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    Hmm.......having a tenous crack at this one....

    Well certainly the late Eocene toothed whale Basilosaurus has been found with squid stomach contents, though it has also been found with the remnants of shark, perhaps demonstrating that it had a somewhat non-exclusive and opportunistic diet. Basilosaurus was an extremely long and serpentine creature stretching almost 40 meters from head to tail. It lived roughly 40-38 million years ago and fossils are known from Egypt, very close to the Valley of the Kings near Cairo, of all places!

    It is generally thought, I think, that the mystecetes (baleen) whales radiated from the basilosaurids early in the subsequent Oligocene period (35-23 mya), leaving the basilosaurids to evolve into the odontocetes or toothed whales we know today. Precisely how closely related the modern three species of Sperm Whale are to Basilosaurus would be interesting to find out.

    The point is, it seems to me that giant squids were prey to large carnivores right up until the end of the Cretaceous when the large marine reptiles died out in the along with the dinosaurs and many other forms of marine life (65mya). There was then a huge gap of 25 million years when gigantic forms of cephalopods, if they existed, would have been relatively free of predatory attack. In the adult stages creatures such as Tusoteuthis or Architeuthis would have been fairly safe as there do not appear to be any large marine predator that would have been capable of taking them on, except possibly sharks.

    I am speculating here but I doubt if Tusoteuthis is the direct ancestor of Architeuthis simply due to the paucity of evidence of large fossil squid in the intervening 80 million years. It seems likely that large squid pens from the intervening period would have been found by now. Admittedly the fossils may be out there and we simply have not discovered them yet, but their absence could demonstrate that they were not present and that large squid evolved at least twice in unconnected families, one in the late Cretaceous and one fairly recently. Could it be that Cretaceous extinction event wiped out the prehistoric giant squid leaving the cephalopods to exploit this niche at a later time?

    Perhaps one could surmise that to attain a large size through rapid growth rate would be a useful evolutionary end during this hiatus of large marine predation. Smaller squid sizes are vunerable to be eaten, perhaps the growth of Architeuthis' and Mesonychoteuthis' ancestors to an extreme size was a direct result of being able to exploit this safer ecological niche.

    Again, if anyone knows of any large fossil squid in any fossil deposit, I'd love to hear about it.

    This is purely my own speculation, so please feel free to shoot it down!
     
  20. GeoffC

    GeoffC Cuttlefish Registered

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    Hi Phil,

    Thats all very interesting. I can't remember the reference but BBC Wildlife magazine had an article reporting a study which linked Sperm Whale evolution to the baleen whales rather than the other toothed species. (This study was probably published in the scientific press eg Nature, Science etc so you could find it there - theres an excellent search engine on the Nature website)

    I guess sharks would make a very good top predator in the absence of any marine reptiles and before the evolution of large toothed whales. Though the only fossil I know of which I guess is quite well known is the Carcharodon megalodon (up to about 40ft long Great White relative) but that is, I think, quite recent (past 2 million years or so). There were large bony fish too, one of which was from the Cretaceous and was about 12 ft long, but whose name I forget - watch this space and I'll add it later -> [Xiphactinus molossus or the Bulldog fish - up to 16 ft long] .

    This is a good link http://www.flmnh.ufl.edu/fish/Sharks/InNews/megatoothshark.htm

    later dudes
     

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