A potential new record holder for the largest giant squid washed ashore in western Tasmania. The individual came in at 550 lbs (250 kg) and stretched 26 ft (8 m) from head to the end of its severed tentacles. The specimen was extremely damaged and might measure longer. In the standard metric of body size of sea giants, the school bus (SB), this would measure about 0.9 SB. “It’s a whopper,” Genefor Walker-Smith, curator at the Tasmanian Museum, told the Reuters news service. Interestingly, giant squid rarely, if ever, was ashore on the western Tasmanian beaches being more common on the eastern side.
Craig McClain is the Assistant Director of Science for the National Evolutionary Synthesis Center, created to facilitate research to address fundamental questions in evolutionary science. He has conducted deep-sea research for 11 years and published over 40 papers in the area. He has participated in dozens of expeditions taking him to the Antarctic and the most remote regions of the Pacific and Atlantic. Craig’s research focuses mainly on marine systems and particularly the biology of body size, biodiversity, and energy flow. He focuses often on deep-sea systems as a natural test of the consequences of energy limitation on biological systems. He is the author and chief editor of Deep-Sea News, a popular deep-sea themed blog, rated the number one ocean blog on the web and winner of numerous awards. Craig’s popular writing has been featured in Cosmos, Science Illustrated, American Scientist, Wired, Mental Floss, and the Open Lab: The Best Science Writing on the Web.