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Old 28-09-2005, 10:17   #1
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Giant Squid

Scientists Capture Giant Squid On Camera

First Pics Show a Very Active Giant Squid ~ By Takanori Isshiki

Tokyo - The first photographs of a live giant squid - one of the most mysterious creatures in the deep ocean - suggest it is a more active creature than previously thought, a Japanese scientist said on Wednesday.

Until now the only information about the behaviour of the creatures which measure up to 18 metres in length has been based on dead or dying squid washed up on shore or captured in commercial fishing nets.

But Tsunemi Kubodera, of the National Science Museum, and Kyoichi Mori of the Ogasawara Whale Watching Association, both in Tokyo have captured the first images of Architeuth is attacking bait 900 metres below the surface in the cold, dark waters of the North Pacific.

"Up to now, giant squids were thought to be relatively sluggish squids that stay in deep waters without moving much... But we found out that they move around pretty actively," Kubodera told Reuters in an interview.

Kubodera and Mori published their unprecedented finding in the journal Proceedings B of the Royal Society on Wednesday.

Kubodera said he was particularly struck by the way the giant squid - which was captured on film in a sequence of photographs taken every 30 seconds - tangled its prey in its elongated feeding tentacles.

"It's probably almost exactly the same as the way giant snakes wrap up their prey... with their bodies," said Kubodera as he stood before a mounted specimen of a separate giant squid displayed at the National Science Museum in the Japanese capital.

"That surprised me a little bit," he said.

The Japanese scientists found the squid by following sperm whales, the most effective hunters of giant squid, as they gathered to feed between September and December in the deep waters off the coast of the Ogasawara Islands in the North Pacific.

They used a remote long-line camera and depth logging system to capture the giant squid in the ocean depths.

The photos showed the giant squid thrashing its tentacles about after one of its tentacles got caught on a hook that the bait had been attached to.

It eventually escaped, but left behind a part of a white tentacle.

"When we stuck our fingers out it (the tentacle) stuck on pretty firmly. It got stuck on the deck of the boat... and didn't come off easily. It was still alive," Kubodera said, referring to the tentacle.

Little is known about giant squids, which may have been the basis for the legend of the "kraken" - huge, tentacled monsters that sailors claimed to have encountered in seas off Norway in the 18th century.

Despite the surprising activity of the giant squid captured on film, Kubodera said he thought it lived too deep underwater to pose a menace to sailors like the legendary sea monster.

"They live in areas 900 metres to 1 000 metres deep although they come up at night to around 400 metres to 500 metres.

"It's unthinkable that the giant squid that we photographed would come up to the surface and drag ships down like that," Kubodera said, referring to the kraken of legend.

"But with the ocean, there are still many unknowns," he added.

***
More ...
http://tolweb.org/tree?group=Cephalopoda
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/2661691.stm
http://dsc.discovery.com/convergence...iantsquid.html
http://www.cnn.com/2002/TECH/science...stralia.squid/
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Old 28-09-2005, 20:34   #2
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A 30 footer just was caught here in the Monterey Bay today. The local news covered it, but I have not seen the coverage yet. My wife happend to be one of the locals interviewed. Global Warming or not, things are changing out there.
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Old 28-09-2005, 23:43   #3
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So how deep is montery bay Kai Nui?
That may throw a spanner in the works of the 400m being as shallow as they come theory.
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Old 29-09-2005, 22:05   #4
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Monterey canyon is right out front of the harbor. it drops to 5000 feet. they are discovering new stuff down there on a regular basis. We had the giant squids wash upp all along this coast earlier this year. MBARI (Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute) is based in our harbor.
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Old 30-09-2005, 00:12   #5
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We have a similar sea area here as well. The continental shelf is very close to shore. Cook straight drops to nearly 8000ft. We have had the odd squid washed up on our beaches as well. Hmmm, never have liked the idea of swimming in the open ocean much.
A mate of mine was saling across the Tasman on a delivery trip. He had another guy with him. The weather at one point was rather light air and calm sea and very warm. So this mate of his decided to dive over the side for a swim. My friend yeld out to him, "hey, do you now how far we are from the closet land???". The swimmer thought and replied "well I suppose Australia is about six hundred miles back." "Nup!" replied the guy on board. "It's two miles-----------down"
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Old 30-09-2005, 21:06   #6
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Well, I think I can still make a two mile swim ,but doing it while holding my breath.... Well I am getting old
So, wheels, what is the water temp around there?
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Old 01-10-2005, 03:34   #7
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Well I would call it flamin cold. But then, it doesn't freeze over like some of your wet area's up there, so...
At the mo the water temp around most parts is about 12-13C. Sorry, I can't convert that to F. It does very greatly with where in the country you measure it. It gets warmer up North. Down South it's very cold. It's about 11C at the mo down south and 16c up North. Of course, this is surface temp. I don't know what down in those depths would be.
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Old 01-10-2005, 12:03   #8
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Similiar temp and conditions to Monterey bay. I would imagine you would see some of the same things we get here.
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