A giant squid found in New Zealand is a mystery since scientists are uncertain what caused the death of the giant sea monster. But they also have a giant squid from 2013 they are using as a comparison.
In a related report by the Inquisitr, in New Zealand, a rare oarfish was found and photographed without anyone realizing how amazing their find really was until after the fact. To make matters worse, the oarfish disappeared from the beach and now it was hoped by experts that no one tried eating the 10-foot long sea serpent. Interestingly enough, over in Japan, there is a legend that the oarfish is a portent for disaster, and at least one scientist believes there is truth to that idea.
Back in 2013, the unexpected discovery of one of New Zealand’s giant squids was made by Jack and Sharon Osikai, who found the sea monster while vacationing in Kaikoura. They say they were returning from a fishing trip when they saw the giant squid floating off the coast near Shark’s Tooth.
“It’s not something you see every day,” said Mr Osikai. “It looked quite impressive out in the water with all its tentacles floating around… It took us about an hour to pull it in.”
At the time, Megan Lewis, owner of Kaikoura Aquarium, said they were pretty sure the giant squid died in an epic battle with another giant squid.
“We will be able to examine it to see what it has been eating, measure the diameter of its eyes, and its individual tentacles,” she said. “We have already got a [giant squid] tentacle which we can compare it to. It really does look like beak marks from another squid. They are carnivores, and they do eat each other.”
In his book The Search for the Giant Squid, marine biologist Richard Ellis describes what a sight it would be to see two giant squid battle it out.
“There is probably no apparition more terrifying than a gigantic, saucer-eyed creature of the depths… Even the man-eating shark pales by comparison to such a horror… An animal that can reach a length of 60 feet is already intimidating, and if it happens to have eight squirmy arms, two feeding tentacles, gigantic unblinking eyes, and a gnashing beak, it becomes the stuff of nightmares.”
Lewis is a trained marine biologist and she believes the newest giant squid is an older female, so age may be a contributing factors in its death.
“They tend to grow very fast and live not very long,” she said, according to the Marlborough Express. “There’s no indication of how it died – the stomach was full so it wasn’t hungry.”
The giant squid was found washed up on the beach, and the Facebook account for Kaikoura Aquarium explained what they plan for its future.
“Before the birds got to it – we got help to move it to the aquarium where it is safe inside a freezer with glass windows so you can see it – on display until we can do more with it,” they said. “Some samples will so far be going to both Auckland and Otago universities for further research.”
The last time a giant squid was found in New Zealand, the Marine Centre hosted a public dissection, so it is possible they will do the same once again.
[Image via Kaikoura Marine Centre and Aquarium/Facebook]