Sunday, January 1, 2012


Test test test

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Giant Octopus With Jack-O-Lantern

The New York Aquarium's resident Giant Octopus "Squirt" posing with a jack-o-lantern. Happy Halloween from Squid Report.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Why Are Squid Washing Up On Shore?

Even though there has been an increase in reports of Giant Squid, sightings and findings are still relatively few and far between. Since the first photos of a live Giant Squid in its natural habitat were taken just five years ago (September 30, 2004 by Dr. Tsunemi Kubodera), there is little known about the animals habits and range of habitat. There have been only three cases of Giant Squid reported found in North America since this summer. Two have been found off in the Gulf of Mexico and one off the coast of British Columbia. In each case, a single squid was found floating in the water. This makes sense as the giant squid generally thought of to be a solitary hunter.

One theory leading to the death of Giant Squid in the Gulf of Mexico is the sudden change of ocean depth when a squid migrated from the Atlantic.

There have, however, been a few interesting cases of schools of Humbolt Squid washing up on shore this year. The Humbolt Squid travels in groups of up to 1200 individual squid and generally live in warm Pacific waters off the coast of Mexico. It is thought that because of climate changes, the Humbolt Squid populations are moving north towards the Pacific Northwest. As they move into these waters they encounter a wide variety of new environmental stresses, because of this it is necessary to examine each situation on its own.

On July 13, 2009, dozens of dazed Humbolt Squid washed up on La Jolla Shores beach in La Jolla, California. This was thought to have been caused by a magnitude 4.0 earthquake that occurred 19 miles off the coast. It is thought that the quake disoriented and confused the squid.

On September 22, 2009, Dozens of Humbolts washed ashore along the central Oregon Coast between Florence and Newport.

According to The Register-Guard:
            The ones that washed up in Oregon on Tuesday were mostly about 2 feet long, with characteristic purplish red and white skin and two diamond-shaped fins that they use to swim and glide. Many were still alive when they rolled onto shore, said Bill Hanshumaker, a marine education specialist with the Hatfield Marine Science Center.
            “They’re not dying offshore,” Hanshumaker said. “They’re coming to the beach in major distress, and then they die.”
            Why that’s happening is something of a mystery, he added, though it was about this time last year that a group of squid were reported stranded on Oregon beaches along with about two dozen salmon sharks. A similar number of dead sharks has reappeared on Oregon beaches in recent weeks, Hanshumaker said, so it’s possible that the demise of these two types of creatures is somehow linked.
            One possibility with the squid involves whether they are “terminal spawners,” a question Hanshumaker said he was researching, which could indicate that the creatures happened to spawn nearby and then came ashore and died.

On Sept. 28, 2009, 300 squid washed up on Long Beach, in British Columbia. The reason is unknown.

In these three cases, we have three potential explanations:
1-    Earthquake
2-    “Terminal Spawners” - They spawn nearby and then come ashore to die
3-    Mysterious and Unknown

That's a lot of writing to pretty much say "it depends".

Movie Trailer Friday: Peter Benchley's The Beast

It's JAWS, but with a Giant Squid. Seeing as how the movie was made on a shoe-string (made for TV) budget in the mid 1990's, it honestly doesn't look too bad. It looks to be equal, if not better than, Mega Shark vs Giant Octopus. The Beast has actually been posted on YouTube in its entirety and Squid Writer plans on watching it eventually. Until then, enjoy the trailer.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Giant Squid Found Off Cayman Islands is reporting:
Three fishermen in waters off the coast of Grand Cayman came across a dead Giant Squid on September 27, 2009. The fisherman marked the spot of discovery on their GPS and contacted the Department of Environment. Scientists from the Department of Environment determined the squid to be Asperoteuthis acanthoderma. This is a very rare deep water squid and is only the fifth animal of the species to ever be documented in the Atlantic. 

The article quotes Dr. Heather Judkins, a cephalopod expert at the University of South Florida:

Dr Judkins explained that discoveries might be due to fishermen now recognising the importance of reporting giant squid sightings to scientists, and that topography of the ocean floor might also play a role. She said that in the Florida Keys and the Cayman Islands “there is a geological bump of sorts where the depth of the water goes from deep to shallow rather quickly and that may be bringing the squid closer to the surface.”

Full Article

A photo of the found Giant Squid:

SQUID MAP has been updated with newest finding.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Giant Squid Map

Squid Report has added a map of Giant Squid sightings. A small version of the map is located on the right side of the site. A mark will be placed for each new sighting as well as a short summary of the sighting. The full map can be accessed <here>. As of right now there are only two markers (representing the two sightings since the inception of Squid Report). Be patient, the map will grow.