Shark Attacks Giant Squid Off Coast Of Australia [Video]

By Amir Khan on June 6, 2012 11:24 AM EDT

Giant Squid
A giant squid, one of the most elusive creatures in the ocean, was found floating off the coast of Australia on Monday, and a blue shark could not resist the free meal (Photo: YouTube)

A giant squid, one of the most elusive creatures in the ocean, was found floating off the coast of Australia on Monday. The carcass of the squid measured approximately 10 feet (3 meters) long, though most of its tentacles were bitten off.

Few giant squids have ever been seen and none have been as fresh as this specimen, Al McGlashan, a fishing columnist for the Daily Telegraph who found the squid, said.

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"It must have died not that long before we found it because it didn't smell at all and its colors were still strong - most giant squid remains are smelly and rotten and just off-white by the time someone finds them," he said in the Daily Telegraph.

Giant squid and its only known predator, the sperm whale, engage in deadly battles hundreds of feet under the surface, Mandy Reid, a squid specialist with the Australian Museum, said. It's likely this is how the squid met its end.

"Most squid only live for a year, they grow extremely quickly, but there is also a chance that it has been attacked by a sperm whale," Reid told the Telegraph. "Sperm whales are far bigger, heavier and faster in the water - the giant squid are quite slow - so the whale generally wins."

As McGlashan was filming the squid, a blue shark came in for a feast.

""It hoed into the squid straight away and didn't care a bit that it was right next to us; it was taking great chunks out of the squid in one bite," he said. "It goes to show not much goes to waste in the natural world. Everything gets recycled somehow."

But just because sharks enjoy the meal, doesn't mean humans would, Reid said.

"They taste really bad, the flesh has an intense ammonia smell," she said. ""Ammonia makes the squid less dense than seawater, giving it neutral buoyancy so it doesn't waste energy constantly swimming."

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