Eledone cirrhosa

Curled octopus

Eledone cirrhosa

Oban, Scotland, 12 meters, 2008, MV


Eledone cirrhosa is a cephalopod of 50 cm long. Its upper side is red, yellow or yellow-orange, its underside white. Its body is finely tuberculate. Like other cephalopods, curled octopus can instantly change its body colour to match with the background colour. The head is oval, small and narrow. The large mantle spreads between eight long and slender arms. Tentacles have a single row of sucking discs and their tappering ends are curled when at rest. It feeds on large crustaceans such as lobsters and edible crabs using its powerful beak to pierce carapace. Common, it lives on rocky bottoms as well as on sand or mud.


Eledone cirrhosa is found between 10 and 150 m deep, but sometimes down to 800 meters, in the Atlantic Ocean, the English Channel, the North Sea and the Mediterranean Sea.

Image satellite: © Esri, DigitalGlobe, GeoEye, Earthstar Geographics, CNES/Airbus DS, USDA, USGS, AeroGRID, IGN, and the GIS User Community.

Données de distribution : Eledone cirrhosa in GBIF Secretariat (2019). GBIF Backbone Taxonomy. Checklist dataset accessed via on 2023-01-28.


Source : World Register of Marine Species

Dernière mise à jour 28-01-2023

Page glossary

Beak : pair of horny jaws that has a parrot's beak shape.


Text : Anne Bay-Nouailhat © 2008 - 2023.

Photos : © Mat Vestjens. Published with his kind permission.
Websites and reference works : Consult bibliography

How to cite this page

Bay-Nouailhat A., September 2008, Description of Eledone cirrhosa, [On line], consulted on 2023 January 28.


Photographie de Anne Bay-Nouailhat

Anne Bay-Nouailhat

Project manager in marine environment
Professional diver - Naturalist

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