Paralarvae (singular: paralarva) are young cephalopods in the planktonic stages between hatchling and subadult. This stage differs from the larval stage of animals that undergo true metamorphosis. Paralarvae have been observed only in members of the orders Octopoda and Teuthida.
The term was first introduced by Richard E. Young and Robert F. Harman in 1988.
Chtenopteryx sicula paralarvae. Left: Two very young paralarvae. The circular tentacular clubs bear approximately 20 irregularly arranged suckers. Two chromatophores are present on each side of the mantle. Centre: Ventral, dorsal and side views of a more advanced paralarva. An equatorial circulet of seven large yellow-brown chromatophores is present on the mantle. Posteriorly the expanded vanes of the gladius are visible in the dorsal view. Right: Ventral and dorsal views of a very advanced paralarva.