Little Cuttlefish

Little cuttlefish

Little cuttlefish ©

Little Cuttlefish

Scientific name: Sepiola atlantica
This little cuttlefish really lives up to its name - it only reaches about 5cm long!

Species information


Length: Up to 6cm

Conservation status


When to see

January to December


The Little Cuttlefish is a small, cup-shaped cephalopod with large eye bulges. They are in fact a type of Bobtail Squid, rather than a true cuttlefish, and don't have a cuttlebone. They spend much of their time buried in sandy seabeds with only their eyes exposed, on the look out for predators and their favourite prey - little crustaceans. Like Common Cuttlefish, they are able to change colour using the chromatophores in their skin. They most often appear a paleish white with brown and black splodges - enabling them to blend in with their sandy home.

How to identify

A very small cuttlefish with a rounded cup-like body and protrusive eyes. Normally pale with brown and white blotchy markings, but changes colour when disturbed. Eye bulges sometimes tinged green.


Found off all UK coasts.

Did you know?

If disturbed, Little Cuttlefish release a jet of ink and will change their colouration to pale to confuse the predator and make their escape.

How people can help

It is essential for the survival of sea creatures like the little cuttlefish that we look after our oceans. The Wildlife Trusts are working towards a vision for Living Seas, where wildlife thrives alongside the sustainable use of our seas' resources.

Show your love for the sea by supporting your local Wildlife Trust, reducing your plastic use and adding your voice to our campaign for Living Seas.


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