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Divers Stumble Upon Bizarre, Car-Sized Ball Of Jelly

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Morenike Adebayo

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clockJul 29 2015, 22:50 UTC
1384 Divers Stumble Upon Bizarre, Car-Sized Ball Of Jelly
Diver reaches out to touch the squid egg mass. The smaller dots are eggs but the larger ones have not yet been identified. Lutfu Tanriover/Vimeo.

A group of divers swimming off the coast of Turkey this month encountered a strange, jelly-like globule in the waters. Getting nearer with a torch for a closer inspection, they saw that it was almost the size of a car.

None of them realized what the oddity was but they filmed their find and uploaded it for the denizens of the internet to answer their questions.

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Dr. Michael Vecchione of the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History has the answer. Vecchione is a squid expert and he reckons that the gelatinous sphere is actually a huge mass of squid eggs – the largest he’s ever seen.

The squid most likely to have created this enormous jelly of eggs is a large red flying squid Ommastrephes bartramii, which can grow to about 1.5 meters long (about 5 feet). This particular squid “flies” by jettisoning itself out of water and flattening its tentacles and fins to better glide along.

Squid eggs have a phenomenally short incubation period of just a few days. And they usually float in much deeper waters, with those in shallow water drifting there by accident. So the chances of the divers happening upon this eggy blob were actually quite small.

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Check out the video of the blobby mass below uploaded by Lutfu Tanriover.

 

[H/T: VICE]


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