Nesis and Nikitina (1986) described a new family of squids, "Walvisteuthidae", based on a mature male which they named Walvisteuthis virilis. The squid was somewhat similar to onychoteuthids but it had a number of very peculiar features that caused the authors to erect the new family. The peculiar features appear to be modifications that arise at sexual maturity. "Onykia" rancureli has been widely recognized as being very different from other members of this genus and several authors have suggested that a new generic name is needed (e.g., Toll, 1982; Tsuchiya and Okutani, 1991). This generic name is Walvisteuthis.