Late Sunday Cephalopod

April 4, 2010 • 8:39 pm

by Greg Mayer

As a general rule, we here at WEIT eschew involvement with the more cerebral Mollusca, leaving such matters to PZ.  But the cephalopodous creations below adorn the Kohl Center at the University of Wisconsin, so PZ is not likely to see them, especially on the evening when Jon Losos took the photo, just prior to an 8-4 shellacking of Minnesota State-Mankato by the UW hockey Badgers.

The creator of this Cthhulonic congregation seems to have awaken from some dream of dread R’lyeh, and applied the nightmare image direct to the walls of the Kohl Center, only adding diverse colors to the cuttlefish-oid creatures to relieve the horror of his vision.

Giant squid!! (Sort of!!)

February 1, 2010 • 11:25 pm

by Greg Mayer

A real giant squid, Architeuthis (from the Tree of Life).

According to the AP, giant squid have invaded California! Except that, according to the article, they’re not actually giant squid, but Humboldt squid, which don’t get nearly as large (up to about 2 meters) as real giant squid (up to about 14 meters). Fishermen in California have been reeling in the large Humboldt squid by the hundreds. Historically, their distribution was centered on the equator in the eastern Pacific, but recently they have been moving both north into California and as far as British Columbia, and south to central Chile. Despite being on the equator, the waters in their range are actually ordinarily quite cool.

We don’t normally do squid here at WEIT, but PZ occasionally does a cat, so we occasionally do a cephalopod, just to keep him on his toes. And besides, he’s in Ireland, and might miss this one.

Dosidicus gigas
Humboldt squid (Dosidicus gigas), base of arm (from the Tree of Life)