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Giant Squid
Architeuthis dux

Another species of deep ocean creature that has been world famous for centuries has just recently come into the spotlight - the giant squid. Ancient stories from men who traveled the seas exploring the world told of giant monsters of the deep that rivaled the size of the ship. These stories were ridiculed as nonsense recently as humans began to explore the ocean depths because no such creature had ever been spotted.

However, scientists have slowly been piecing together evidence of the elusive giants and recently began finding some very large specimens washed up on shore. The stomach contents of sperm whales have revealed body parts of these huge creatures and sucker marks on some whales' skin stand as a testament to the goliath battles in the deep between the whale and the giant squid. The largest squid found so far had an overall length of about 32 feet, including the two long feeding tentacles. There may be other squids out there even larger. Maybe YOU could be a Teuthologist (a scientist who studies squids) and be the first to discover a live specimen of Architeuthis dux! Read about the biggest invertebrate in the world - the colossal squid!

Giant OctopusIn October of 2001 the remains of an enormous octopus were netted by the research ship of New Zealand's National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) in the waters off New Zealand.

At first, Marine biologist Dr. Steve O'Shea dismissed the specimen as another carcass of a giant squid and it was put into storage in a freezer. But later on, when he cleaned out his freezer and began to carefully examine the specimen he realized that it was not a giant squid, but a huge specimen of octopus, a species not native to the South Pacific. Dr. O'Shea has preliminarily identified the species as belonging to Haliphron atlanticus, but qualifies that as only an educated guess. Further studies will be necessary to confirm the species of giant. He conservatively estimated the full size of the living specimen to be roughly 13 ft/4 meters long, or up to 26 ft/8m across.


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