Squid: Born Like Stars

The adults held the egg sac using two rows of talon-like hooks on the underside of three of their four pairs of arms. The sac is formed of two thin membranes which form a hollow tube, open at both ends. The squid wave their arms to flush water through the sac - probably to aerate the eggs. Previously, it had been thought that squid would be incapable of caring for their eggs as the health of most species deteriorates rapidly after laying eggs. Most adult squid become extremely gelatinous as their muscles degenerate after egg-laying and they die shortly afterwards. But this species appeared "fairly healthy" after egg laying, notes Seibel. Even so the mother weakens as the eggs develop, as she does not feed while holding her progeny. The team believes the adult carries her eggs around in this way for between six to nine months before they hatch, by which time she is exhausted.

Broody squid carry their eggs in their arms