Illex, know also as shortfin squid, is a cepalophod from the Adriatic that resembles squid in its appearance. However, the two are not the same. Unlike squid, illex is dark pink, smaller and thus has less muscle that’s more tough to eat. Considering it’s more affordable and largely represented in the Adriatic it can always be found on the local markets.
Illex lives in the Adriatic and larger individuals are mostly found in greater depths. The largest ones are to be found over 500 m deep. It stays closer to the bottom what makes it easier to catch with trawl nets. It will less likely be caught during sport fishing – those specimens will most likely approach the surface at night an it will be small. Large ones are caught by baiting the hook in other parts of the Mediterranean whereas such practice is not carried in our country. Spawning takes place in the colder part of the year. The eggs do not remain on the bottom like the ones from the squid, but can be seen floation across the surface like a gelatinous mass carried by currents.