Giant squid caused many people to tell tales of what was known in folklore as the Kraken. Now, researchers have found the real-life "Kraken", the Architeuthis dux.
The Architeuthis dux (A. dux) is the world's largest known squid, and while it's not as big as the folklore tales describe the Kraken to be, it's still incredibly large growing to about 46 feet, or about the length of a semi-trailer. These giant squid are hardly spotted in their natural habitat, but that all changed back in 2012 when a team of marine scientists managed to capture a young A. dux 2,000 feet below the sea in south Japan.
A new study has explored why these giant squid, despite their size, are so hard to capture in their environment. The researchers explain that part of the reason the giant squid is so hard to observe in its natural habitat is because of its massive eyes. Due to the A. dux living so far beneath the ocean's surface, the creature has developed the largest eyes in the animal kingdom, as no sunlight can penetrate to the depth of its natural habitat.
Its eyes are around the size of a basketball, and researchers believe that they are most likely very sensitive to any kind of light, including the light used by marine researchers mounted to their submarines/underwater cameras.
The researchers wrote in the study, "Many deep-sea species, including squid, have monochromatic visual systems that are adapted to blue [light] and blue bioluminescence rather than long wavelength red-light. Using red light may thus be a less obtrusive method for illuminating deep-sea species for videography."
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