Named By: J. C. Fischer & B. Riou - 1982.
Classification: Mollusca, Cephalopoda, Octopodiformes, Octapoda.
Species: P. ribeti.
Known locations: France.
Time period: Callovian of the Jurassic.
Fossil representation: Preserved flat on a rock slab.
A primitive Jurassic era cephalopod, Proteroctopus has relatively thin and short arms when compared to the size of the mantle. The small size of the arms suggests that Proteroctopus was probably a pelagic organism that floated around in open water, since the arms were not developed enough to grip and move along the ocean floor. This may in turn suggest that Proteroctopus lived within the darker layers of the ocean, therefore relying upon cover of darkness to protect it from all but the best adapted predators of the time, just as similar cephalopods do today.
-Le plus ancien octopode connu (Cephalopoda, Dibranchiata): Proteroctopus ribeti nov. gen., nov. sp., du Callovien de l'Ardèche (France), J. C. Fischer & B. Riou - 1982.