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  • Ommastrephes argentinus  Castellanos, 1960
    FAO Names
    En - Argentine shortfin squid, Fr - Encornet rouge argentin, Sp - Pota argentina.
    3Alpha Code: SQA     Taxonomic Code: 3210501003
    Scientific Name with Original Description
    Ommastrephes argentinus  Castellanos, 1960, Neotropica, 6(2):55.
    Diagnostic Features
    Mantle long, muscular, widest at midpoint.  Fins muscular, relatively short (length 42% of mantle length) and broad (width 57% of mantle length); fin angle broad, 45 to 55 (90 to 110° both fins).  Arms very long for the genus, averaging up to 72% of mantle length for arms III in males; all arms of males significantly longer than in females; right (or left) arm IV hectocotylized along more than 50% of its length with suckers and stalks modified into suckerless knobs, truncate lamellae, and narrow lamellae to the tip. 
    Geographical Distribution

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    Western South Atlantic: Approximately 30°S to 50°S.
    Habitat and Biology
    An oceanic and neritic speciesoccurring from the surface to about 800 m depth. In autumn and winter (April to September) it is abundant on the lower shelf (50 to 200 m depth).
    The spawning season extends through the summer from December to March.  Growth is very fast with total length averaging about 40 cm in the following summer. Longevity is between 1 and 2 years.Argentine shortfin squid prey on fishes (juvenile hakes), pelagic crabs and shrimps.They are in turn preyed upon by finfishes such as adult hake (Merluccius hubbsi).
    Maximum mantle length 33 cm; sexual maturity is reached at a total length of about 24 cm.
    Interest to Fisheries
    Illex argentinus is mainly taken as by-catch of the otter trawl fishery for hake or alternating with the hake fishery off Argentina and Uruguay on the continental shelf in depths between 30 and 200 m. In the last four years (1992-95), total catches for this species have been ranging from 223 000 to 310 000 t, according to FAO estimates from available sources. Two third of these catches are taken by Argentina, the rest mainly by the distant fishing fleet of Taiwan (Province of China). The total catch reported for this species to FAO for 1999 was 1 091 299 t. The countries with the largest catches were Argentina (342 691 t) and Taiwan Korea, Republic of (271 716 t).
    The flesh of Illex argentinus is lower in water content than that of I. illecebrosus, but its taste is not highly appreciated in oriental markets. It commands an intermediate price between I. illecebrosus and Ommastrephes bartrami .
    Local Names
    ARGENTINA : Calamar .
    JAPAN : Argentina matsuika .
    URUGUAY : Calamar .
    Source of Information
    FAO Species catalogue VOL. 3. Cephalopods of the world An Annotated and Illustrated Catalogue of Species of Interest to FisheriesClyde F.E. Roper Michael J. Sweeney Cornelia E. Nauen 1984.  FAO Fisheries Synopsis No. 125, Volume 3
    Leta, (1981, fishery, Uruguay)
    Okutani, (1980)
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