Strong swimmers

posted by Aaron Cohen Jun 15, 2012

Here's a weird story, and let's not bury the lede: Cooked squid retain the ability to implant spermatophores in your mouth. We all know how eating raw squid runs this risk, but a recently published report ("Penetration of the oral mucosa by parasite-like sperm bags of squid: a case report in a Korean woman.") details the first known case of spermatophores from cooked squid implanting. Read this post on Squid a Day for a much more nuanced explanation of what exactly a spermatophore is.

In order not to leave calamari connoisseurs unduly freaked out, I should clarify two points. First, most Western squid preparations remove the internal organs and serve only the muscle, so there's no danger of accidentally ingesting spermatophores. Second, it's perfectly fine to handle spermatophores—just don't put them in your mouth. The skin on your hands, and most of the rest of your body, is much too thick to get stuck. I've probably had hundreds of spermatophores ejaculate on my fingers and never felt a sting.

This is Friday Squid Blogging material for sure.

Squids and octopi are not the same creature, and cephalopodian purists will disdain, but for the purpose of this post let's agree that, especially to the layblogger, they share certain similar characteristics. Please allow an octopus link to follow a squid link. Here's a little explainer about how octopus camouflage works. Be sure to watch the video. (via @neilhimself)