New species of squid discovered in southern Indian Ocean

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London, Nov 16 (ANI): Scientists discovered a new species of squid during a research cruise in the southern Indian Ocean.

It was found during the analysis of 7,000 samples gathered during last year's Seamounts cruise organized by the conservation group IUCN, reports the BBC.

The 70 cm-long species is part of the 'chiroteuthid' family with light- producing organs, which act as lures to attract prey.

The discovery is part of a project, which started a year ago when marine experts embarked on a six-week research expedition in the Indian Ocean.

The aim of the cruise was to unveil the mysteries of seamounts in the southern Indian Ocean and to help improve conservation and management of marine resources in the area.

"For 10 days now, 21 scientists armed with microscopes have been working through intimidating rows of jars containing fishes, squids, zooplankton and other interesting creatures," said Alex Rogers of the Department of Zoology at the University of Oxford.

"Many specimens look similar to each other and we have to use elaborate morphological features such as muscle orientation and gut length to differentiate between them," he added.

So far, more than 70 species of squid have been identified from the Seamounts cruise, representing more than 20 percent of global squid biodiversity. (ANI)

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