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Humboldt Squid Attack Humans - 17 Years Ago


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#1 glen

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Posted 27 March 2007 - 09:29 PM

Hi everyone,

I came across a captivating description of how Humboldt squid once attacked some divers and I thought some of you might find this a good read:

Four divers found that out when they tried to document the squids' behavior in the Sea of Cortez 17 years ago. While a non-diving passenger battled to land a 14-foot thresher shark on rod-and-reel, Alex Kerstitch of Arizona and three friends submerged in the nighttime sea, carrying cameras. The divers settled near the dim fringes of the boat's lights. They could see the weary shark being pulled toward the boat. Below, dozens of squid began flashing iridescently, red-white-red.

The flashing is carried out via millions of chromatophores within the skin, opened to reveal red, closed to reveal white; it is believed by some scientists to be a means of communication.

A five-foot squid flung itself onto the shark and tore an orange-sized chunk from its head.

Another squid zoomed forth, tentacles clasped before its beak, and snatched a long needlefish, leaving in its wake a trail of blood and scales.

The frenzy built and Kerstitch, as the lone diver shooting still photographs and with no bright movie lights to deter the predators, was set upon.

A squid grabbed his right swim fin and pulled downward. He kicked it away but another grabbed his head. The cactus-like tentacles found his neck, the only part of his body not covered with neoprene.

He bashed the squid with his dive light, far less bright than the movie lights, and it let go, but it swiped both the light and the gold chain he'd been wearing.

Another squid wrapped its tentacles around his face and chest. Kerstitch dug his fingers into its clammy body.

It slid down and around his waist and pulled him downward in pulsing bursts. Then it suddenly let go, but made off with his compression meter.

For whatever reason, the attack ceased and Kerstitch got to the surface dazed and oozing blood from neck wounds, thankful to be alive.

The incident became legendary among divers, the first of many painful but, so far, nonfatal encounters by divers with Humboldt squid.


Source: http://www.latimes.c...2...1&cset=true
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#2 Jazman

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Posted 28 March 2007 - 12:36 PM

Holy squid, that is quite chilling! :)

I found this passage particuluarly scary:

"It slid down and around his waist and pulled him downward in pulsing bursts"

I would have dead set panicked :)
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