April 27, 2007
Myth vs. Reality
For ages many believed the giant squid was one of the many fictitious creatures of the world up there with the Loch Ness Monster, and Big Foot. Stories such as Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Sea created images of beasts that tore ships asunder and seemed like they could only come from the imagination. What little did we know that deep within the oceans surrounding us lurked the Architeuthis dux. All those years of sailing stories that were believed to be false, were actually true.
In the 1930's The royal Norwegian Navy's Brunswick was attacked by a giant squid on at least three different occasions. During each encounter the squid would deliberately pull along side of the ship, pace it, then suddenly turn, run into the ship and wrap its tentacles around the hull. The encounters were left the squid worse each time because it was unable to keep hold on the ship and would slip into the propeller.
Another sighting was in 1965, when a Soviet whaler boat witnessed a battle between a squid and a sperm whale. Neither the whale or the squid survived. The strangled whale was found floating in the sea with the squid's tentacles wrapped around the whale's throat and the squid's severed head was discovered later within whale's stomach.
During World War II a crew member of a British Admiralty trawler was fishing of the side of the ship late at night. He witnessed a large orb in the water that he realized was an eye. After realizing it was a squid the crew member walked the length of the ship finding the head at one end and the tentacles at the other. The ship was over 175 feet long.
Before scientists started examining the remains of squid washed ashore, the giant squid remained out of spotlight, but in December of 2006 that all changed. A Japanese research team off the coast of Tokyo threw out a small squid as bait in hopes of hitting it big and after 3 years of failure they finally hit it big. The 24 foot female they reeled in
became the first giant squid ever seen alive.
View a video of the discovery at http://youtube.com/watch?v=EIELef5R6nY