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Fishermen Find Rare Species Of Giant Squid On Hawaiian Coast

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Tom Hale

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Tom Hale

Senior Journalist

Tom is a writer in London with a Master's degree in Journalism whose editorial work covers anything from health and the environment to technology and archaeology.

Senior Journalist

2795 Fishermen Find Rare Species Of Giant Squid On Hawaiian Coast
Mathew Fowler

Giant squid are elusive and mysterious creatures that have inspired storytellers and confused scientists for years. Therefore, it came as a surprise when a group of fishermen stumbled across one off the coast of Hawaii last week.

Just after releasing a blue marlin from their lines, the fishermen spotted the body of a 2-meter-long (7-foot-long) squid floating in the ocean just off the coast of Kona. Talking to Newsweek, Cyrus Widhalm, the boat's captain, said he phoned a local marine biologist for advice, who instructed them to bring it aboard.

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He added, "We didn't realize how heavy it was. I held him in place as he reached down to get it because we were worried a tentacle would reach out to grab him. Once we were sure it was dead, I got into the water. I pushed it up and he pulled it out."

Image credit: Mathew Fowler

Image credit: Mathew Fowler

Speaking to Khon 2, Wildham suggested the squid had been attacked because it was missing tentacles and there was a bite mark on its head. 

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The marine biologist also identified the species as a type of glass squid called Megalocranchia fisheri. Little is known about this species, except that it has only been found near Hawaii and can grow up to 2.7 meters (9 feet) in length.

After bringing the squid aboard, they sailed back to a dock in Kailua-Kona, where it was weighed in at 24 kilograms (52.7 pounds). The body was put on ice and sent to be examined at the Alaska Fisheries Science Center in Seattle, Washington.

Image credit: Mathew Fowler

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