Giant Squid Spotted off the Louisiana Coast
For the first time in recorded history, marine biologists studying sea life in the Gulf of Mexico have spotted a Giant Squid. Before you say something snarky about calamari, just know that this particular species of cephalopod grows to an average of 30 feet long! You're gonna need a lot spicy marinara to finish off this big boy.
For the longest time, the very existence of a living specimen was doubted. Many assumed the huge ocean dweller was extinct until a picture of one was captured by Japanese scientists in 2004. It would be 8 years later before a video of the majestic beast would be taken, so to say that seeing one at all is extremely rare. This is officially the first time one has been seen in the Gulf of Mexico, and the sighting happened about 100 miles off of the Louisiana coast.
Scientists with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) were studying sea life at a depth of 3,200 feet, more commonly referred to as the "midnight zone,” as little to no light from the surface is perceivable at this depth. Researchers were using a special, underwater camera rig called “the Medusa." This purpose built device uses special red LED's so researchers can spy on the mysterious creatures that live there undetected. Since the sea life can't see this special camera rig, the scientists can see the creatures without disturbing them. The rig had a fake jellyfish tied to it in order to attract the creatures in to the camera's view. That camera rolled from June 8th to the 22nd, producing a massive amount of footage.
After sifting through hundreds of hours of video, scientist Nathan Robinson came across 17 seconds that would make the entire trip worth while. This short footage would clearly show a 10 to 12 foot long giant squid investigate the fake jellyfish before giving up on it's "meal," and disappearing into the inky black once again.
The video is astonishing, check it out for yourself here.