Squid are part of the cephalopod family that includes the octopus and cuttlefish. There are about 300 species of squid and most are no bigger 60 cm (24 inches) long. However, there are some species of squid that can grow well over 400kg (880 lbs). These are the species of squid that get the most attention and have contributed to the many stories of giant squid between sailors and in ancient mythology. If you have ever wondered what is the largest squid ever caught, keep reading to find out.
What is the largest squid ever caught?
The largest squid ever was captured was a species of squid called the Colossal Squid. It was caught in the Antarctic waters of the Ross Sea by fishermen aboard the boat San Aspiring that is owned by Sanford seafood company. The squid was attempting to feed on a fish caught on a long line and was brought to the surface where it refused to let go of the fish. The fishermen decided to capture it in a net and bring it aboard for freezing.
The squid was studied at the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa where it was discovered to weigh a massive 495 kg (1,091 lb). It was estimated to be approximately 10 m (33 ft) long when captured, but due to the tentacles shrinking after death the exact length will never be known. The squid was found to have the largest eye of any known animal at 27 cm (10.63 in) wide. Amazingly, the beak of the squid is smaller than some that have been found inside sperm whales, which suggests that Colossal Squid grow even larger! It has been on display at the museum since December 2008.
View a video of this Colossal Squid being defrosted by scientists: