Monday, May 10, 2010

Getting Your Squid On - Ambush or Active?

The colossal squid (Mesonychoteuthis hamiltoni) is the stuff of legends and popular myth. It is also one of our favourite deep sea critters.

Often depicted as active hunters of the deep researchers are scaling back this view, proposing that Mesonychoteuthis hamiltoni is more of a passive hunter. Similar perhaps to Magnapinna and a video that made the Blue Blogger rounds in 2007/8.

The BBC had great coverage of this ongoing discussion as does RTSea Blog.

Taking into account the depth at which these critters reside and water temperatures, researchers now think the colossal squids hunting technique is like a many branched upside down tree with prey items blundering into spiked tipped arms, only to be pulled into a two foot beak and ripped to pieces...very slowly of course.

Here's a video of Magnapinna. Watching this critter in action you'll get the idea. Ironically this video comes from a Shell Oil deepwater exploration ROV:

1 comment:

Andy (The Texas Crew) said...

Cool video guys!