Last week, I devoted part of this space to an examination of an imitation calamari product and its unsavory pork byproduct main ingredient. But imitation calamari may be a thing of the past, thanks to a recent discovery by marine biologists searching the ocean depths 500 miles off the coast of Japan.
"Monster Squid: The Giant Is Real," which airs Sunday on the Discovery Channel, documents the first-ever video filming of a live giant squid in its natural habitat. Sporting 600-some pounds of calamari on the 40-foot tentacle, giant squid like the one videotaped for the Discovery Channel have previously been documented only through sporadic sightings at sea, or when their bodies wash up on shore.
The filming of this giant was the culmination of years of searching, which ended when an intensive six-week search by an armada of deep-diving manned submersibles made possible a face-to-face encounter.
The successful encounter with the giant squid was not the result of stealth and subtlety. New Zealand biologist Steve O'Shea told an interviewer that he chummed the waters with an extract of chemicals from the arms, gonads and mantles of adult squids and descended into the deep with "lights blazing, singing Neil Diamond, making as much noise as possible and squirting all sorts of chemicals into the water."
The approach worked, O'Shea said, partly because he is convinced the giant squid "is one of the most stupid animals in the ocean. The only thing going through that 20 gram brain is eating and breeding."
My non-scientific take on the sea giant's gender?
Must've been a guy.