Release the Kraken!
It was a calm morning in Antarctica’s remote Ross Sea, during the season when the sun never sets, when Capt. John Bennett and his crew hauled up a creature with tentacles like fire hoses and eyes like dinner plates from a mile (1.6 km) below the surface.
The monster from the deeps was a colossal squid, one of the sea’s most elusive species, weighing 350 kilograms (770 pounds) and as long as a minibus. The maximum estimated length of colossal squid is 14 meters (46 feet), a meter longer than even the giant squid, which is rarely found in polar waters.
They froze the squid, and it stayed on ice for eight months until Tuesday, when scientists in New Zealand got a long-anticipated chance to thaw out the animal and inspect it — once they maneuvered it with a forklift into a tank.
The squid is a female. Its eight arms are each well over a meter (3.3 feet) long. Its two tentacles would have been perhaps double that length if they had not been damaged.
Kat Bolstad, a squid scientist from the Auckland University of Technology who was leading a team examining the creature, described it as “very big, very beautiful.”
“This is essentially an intact specimen, which is almost an unparalleled opportunity for us to examine,” she said. “This is a spectacular opportunity.”
Many people around the world agreed. About 142,000 people from 180 countries watched streaming footage of the squid examination on the Internet.
Colossal squid sometimes inhabit the world of fiction and imagination but have rarely been seen in daylight. Remarkably, Bennett and his crew on the toothfish boat San Aspiring have caught two of them. Their first, hauled in seven years ago, is on display in New Zealand’s national museum, Te Papa.
Bennett said there was so much excitement about his previous catch, he thought he had better save the latest one for research.
“It was partly alive; it was still hanging onto the fish,” Bennett recalled, “just a big bulk in the water. They’re huge, and the mantle’s all filled with water. It’s quite an awesome sight.”
Susan Waugh, a senior curator at Te Papa, said scientists hope to find out more about where the creature fits in the food chain, how much genetic variation there is among different squid types, and basic facts about how the colossal squid lives and dies.
She said scientists plan to further assess the condition of the squid before determining whether to preserve it for public display.
Bolstad said it is possible that ancient sightings of the species gave rise to tales of the kraken, or giant sea-monster squid. She said sperm whales often eat colossal squid and are known to play with their food, and sailors may have mistaken that for epic battles.
“On the other hand, we don’t really know what the grog rations were like at that time at sea, either,” she said. “So it may be that we’ve got a bit of a fisherman’s story going on there, too.” - Japan Times
Craft Landing in Ohio Field?
2/28/2014 - I was driving to Ohio from Va. and was less then 10min from home when I noticed to my left "south" in a field a red turned white light ascending @2:00 and went out. This is an open corn field with Nothing around. I drove another half mile then turned south and then noticed an emensely bright white light going same direction a quater mile to my left then I turned West and looked back and it was still visible. I drove another two miles before turning left "south" again and seen the light heading south west. I continue driving a quarter before turning into my driveway and as I backed up to my garage "facing south" I noticed the light "floating" as it seemed to slowly come my direction. I watched it for 2-3 min before remembering I'd purchased a camcorder that arrived while I was in Va. and went and grabbed it and recorded it for quite somd time. This was thee Brightest white light I'd Ever seen in the sky and was amazed when I zoomed in and started to record. I've attached 4 stills off the flip out screen from my phone cam, so a pic from a pic. I apologize on not uploading the video as Im in transistion of moving and havent transferred the video. - MUFON CMS
USS Hornet Experience
The USS Hornet is a real aircraft carrier that was used in WWII. The following experiences are entirely true, and are still creepy as I think about them.
When I was about 9 years old, 7 years ago, I was in Boy Scouts. We went on a small, say field trip, to go see the USS Hornet, which as they said was haunted, I found out later they weren't just trying to scare us. Anyway, we went around the ship with a guide learning about it, hearing there had been deaths on the ship after it was hit with a torpedo. After the whole tour, our group was going to stay the night and live out the next day exactly how the crew did back during the war. The cafeteria etc.
That night I went to sleep in a top bunk in the barracks. During the middle of the night, I woke up to go to the bathrooms, Now the ship is almost completely dark, being that the only lights on are the red emergency lights, so people can find their way to the bathrooms. So as I'm walking down the hall I hear stomping above me (now I was tired and didn't think about the fact that you wouldn't even be able to hear a gunshot from the floor above, being that the floors are 3 layers of titanium.) and I thought it was a few kids running around, so I turn around and go towards the stairs as I'm still hearing the stomping. So as I get up to the next floor I walk down the hall, I couldn't see all the way down because of the lighting, I still hear stomping in the darkness. I walk all the way to the end, which is a dead end and the sound stops. I was tired, so I wasn't alarmed, I returned to go to the bathroom, and I hear the noise again. I check another time, same thing happened again, and I started to worry. I ignore the noise the third time and go straight to the bathroom, as I'm walking to the bathroom I pass the prison cells they have in the ship, and the pillows that are meant to be on the beds are all on the middle of the floor. I run into the bathroom and every sink and toilet are just rushing water, so I think forget this if I piss myself it's better than going in here. I go back into the barracks and climb into the bunk.
I wake up the next morning before everyone else and I'm laying on the cold floor under the other bunks, and there's no way I could have fell, they were like hammocks, and if it were a prank, I'm a very light sleeper and it wouldn't have worked. To this day, I still don't understand the events that occurred that night. Look at this through a 9 year old's eyes. - Reddit.com
The London Mermaid
Eades decided to take his mermaid on tour after docking at several harbours and making a quick profit from locals eager to observe the monstrosity. From here, the devious captain would take to London and see his creature exhibited at the Turf Coffeehouse in St James Street, where he rented a room from a Mr Watson.
Many naturalists and the like who saw the creature all agreed it was in fact a real mermaid.
A MERMAID!! – A wonder of the world, the admiration of all ages, the theme of the Philosopher, the Historian, the Poet…may be seen at number 59 St James Street, every day, Sundays excepted from ten in the morning until five in the afternoon. Admittance one shilling.
...so read the sign which attracted thousands of curious people.
Despite making a lot of money from the specimen, the bubble would soon burst. A Mr Pickering who owned a majority of the ship that Eades sold was on the rampage, and soon showed the captain up for what he was, a fraud. Meanwhile, a Mr Clift, expert anatomist, was quick to pour cold water on the authenticity of the beast. The mermaid was simply a clever construction of fish, human bone, artificial material, and monkey!
The public had been ripped off. Chaos ensued. Eades attempted to flog a dead horse for the next few months until the coffeehouse shut down in 1823. No-one really knows what happened to the fraudulent creature but London had never seen anything quite like it. - Londonist
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