Giant Squid Captured on New Up-Close Video

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A giant squid surfaced over Christmas Eve in Toyama, in west-central Japan, providing a rare glimpse of the deep sea creature. NHK via YouTube

Dockside visitors at a harbor in Toyama, Japan, got quite a treat this Christmas eve when a giant squid was seen near the water's surface. Afterward, divers captured some incredible video of the rarely-seen deep-sea beast.

The animals, in the genus Architeuthis, are infrequently seen at the ocean surface under natural conditions unless they are sick or dying, marine biologist Christopher Mah wrote on Twitter. However, it appears this creature was likely captured in a net of one of the harbor's fishing vessels, from which it escaped or was released.

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The squid measured about 1 meter (3.3 feet) by 4 meters (13 feet), and is probably a juvenile, a local resident told CNN. Giant squid can grow to over 40 feet long.

Akinobu Kimura, owner of a local diving outfit called Diving Shop Kaiyu, told the network that his "curiosity was way bigger than fear, so I jumped into the water and go close to it. This squid was not damaged and looked lively, spurting ink and trying to entangle his tentacles around me." He then guided it back to the open ocean, where it disappeared into the depths.

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Giant Squid Captured on New Up-Close Video | Tech & Science