THIS IS A REAL PHOTO…
Now I have to admit despite all the really cool things squids can do; changing colour and texture to attract other squid, shooting out bio luminescent ink to distract it’s prey etc, the squid still kind of scare the crap out of me. Granted not your average squid but the idea of an 18m monster squid, with an eye as big as your head, plus a razor sharp beak definitely freaks me out a little. Or as most of the world knows it, the giant squid. Whilst researching this I discovered that they actually think there is a squid bigger than this, the colossal squid. Cue the nightmares. I’m sorry Squidward from Sponge Bob, you’re just not going to cut it out there – Sarah
The battle to end all battles
1 – Round 1 “ding, ding!” Sperm whales and Giant squids (or colossal squids as well I guess) have real life fights. In my head I kind of imagine it as that horrendous B movie “mega shark vs giant octopus”. It’s probably not as dramatic or cheesy as that though. But still it’s true, Sperm whales are known to eat giant squid as a food and there’s no way that beast is going down without a fight. Sperm whales that have washed up on beaches have not only had remains of giant squid inside them but they are also found with sucker and beak marks from the face off with the kraken.
2 – That’s right you could, technically, get high off a squid, well it’s ink to be precise. Some of the ink from certain types of squid contains dopamine, the neurotransmitter that, in human brains, produces the sensation of euphoria. At least if you were getting attacked by a squid you might at least feel happy about it, especially the way they eat stuff. Cue the next fact…
3 – Squids will stalk their prey until it is in range. They than catch them in their arms and pull their poor victim to its mouth. Using their beaks they tear off parts of the animal before grinding up the food and effectively swallowing it. Seriously could this be any creepier? They’re like the serial killers of the ocean, stalking their victim and then viciously tearing it apart. Thankfully most common squid prey includes small fish, crabs and oh yeah other squid. Cannibalism too. No wonder sailors were so afraid of the Kraken, I bet giant squid would happily eat a human or two. Worst. Death. Ever.
4 – zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzoooooooooooooooommmmmmmmmmmm; If you’ve ever seen a squid zip away you know they’re fast. In fact some can reach speeds of 25 miles per hour, this is as fast as some sharks. Unfortunately they can only do this in short spurts. I can basically imagine this as me when I go running. I can manage it for about a minute or two and then keel over from the exertion. This is why they need the ink as well people.
5 – A pretty cool fact about The Humboldt squid, it can turn itself a blood red colour. Now this doesn’t necessarily sound too special but, as you divers know, light does not travel very far underwater. This means that the squid can effectively turn itself invisible under the water. Did I mention how big this squid was too? Imagine running into that under the water by accident.