Largest squid observed on a dive
Last updated: October 11, 2017 at 3:00 am
Giant squid – Akinobu Kimura (Japan) dove alongside and filmed a 3.7-m (12.1 ft) giant squid near the surface in Toyama Bay (Japan) for several minutes before it swam into deeper water on December 24, 2015.
Humboldt Squid (Dosidicus gigas), a.k.a. Jumbo squid or Jumbo flying squid – Grow to 2 m (6 ft) and weigh 45 kg (100 lbs) during their one-year lifespan. Although they are normally found at depths between 200 m and 700 m (650 ft and 2300 ft) along the Eastern Pacific, they jet to the surface at night to feed. They are aggressive predators hunting in groups of over 1,000 individuals and there are several reports of attacks on divers and fishermen. Divers have suffered lacerations from the squids’ hooked tentacles while others have been dragged to deeper water before being let go. Mexican fishermen call them “Diablos rojos” (red devils). Nonetheless, some researchers consider the Humboldt squid harmless to humans. William Gilly, a biology professor at Stanford University in Palo Alto, has repeatedly snorkeled at the surface at night in the presence of large squid and has never been attacked.
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Jeffrey Gallant is the Editor-in-Chief and Records Keeper of the Diving Almanac. He is also a contributing editor of DIVER Magazine, and the scientific director of the Greenland Shark and Elasmobranch Education and Research Group (GEERG). Jeffrey started diving in 1982.