Colossal Squid at Te Papa Museum in New Zealand

Photo: Te Papa Blog

That's Dr. Steve O'Shea and Dr. Tsunemi Kubodera of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa in Wellington, preparing to preserve their colossal squid specimen, caught in the Ross Sea in February 2007 and kept frozen until now.

Everyone's enthralled with the squid's eyes, which are the size of dinner plates. But I was more amazed at the tentacle hooks:

The arm hooks are set in fleshy, very muscular sheaths and are strongly attached to the arms. They are likely to assist in holding and immobilising struggling prey as it is being killed and eaten. Most of the arm hooks have the main strong ‘claw’ (visible below), and also two smaller auxiliary cusps closer to the hook’s base, making them three-pointed and maximising their ability to hold and dig in. The base of each hook also has a complex structure that is set deep into the surrounding musculature. (Source)

Photo: Kat Bolstad

The Te Papa's Blog has the entire story: - Thanks Geekazoid!

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I really love how they hav preserved this squid. there is not much nown and haveing the squid preserved the way it is has helped the marin science's a lot in understanding more about the squid, and i watched the show they had about this, and it was absolutly fasanting!!!
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Hey next episode in SquidCam....

We're pulling our squid out of formalin and moving it to its new display tank. Steve O'Shea will be there to sew up a rip in the mantle and examine it now it's preserved.

The live webcast is only for 1 day on Wednesday 6 August starting 9am NZ time (USA: Tuesday 5 August 2pm to 5pm, UK: Tuesday 10pm).

Check out the full programme on Te Papa's website.
Hope you can join us!
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