Posts tagged with Colossal squid

More about the eyes…

Hi This is Bruce Marshall, Collection Manager Mollusca, from Te Papa. When we turned the specimen we confirmed that the eyes were oriented antero-laterally. In other words the animal looks pretty well straight forward rather than from either side if its head. Other squid have eyes on the side of their head but they can… Read more »

The eye – great photos

The eye - © Copyright Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, 2008

Now that the squid is in the cradle you can really see the eye – and see that it does indeed look forward not out to the side. The black bit you can see is the opening – it is about 12cm across. But remember the mass of the whole eye is much bigger. You… Read more »

Mark tells us what the squid feels like…

A very friendly squid! © Copyright Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, 2008

Hi Mark here, just thought you might like to know how our squid feels after three months in the fixing solution. To my touch the arms are now firm and don’t “give” in the way they did when we first defrosted her. The mantle however still has a covering of the jelly like substance that… Read more »

Into the cradle

The team move the squid into the cradle, © Copyright Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, 2008

Mark and Steve are begining to move the squid into position and slide it into the lifting cradle (from the grave into the cradle?) assisted by some of Steve O’Shea’s students from AUT.  We’ll trial the lifting equipment, but will not do the actual lift until after lunch. The Squid weighs about 495kgs so it’s… Read more »

Continuity

Steve O'Shea, Mark Fenwick and others getting ready to go into the tank © Copyright Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, 2008

If you’ve been watching for a while and getting slightly confused about what’s going on, we have a film crew here getting footage for the documentary. In order to get the shots they want, we are doing a few things in reverse, or twice. The tank lid was replaced, then removed for the filming. Let… Read more »

The plan for the day

  • Mark Fenwick and Steve O'Shea turn the squid over
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  • Mark Fenwick and Steve O'Shea turning the squid over © Copyright Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, 2008

This morning’s main activity is to turn the Colossal Squid over. We did think we may not be able to turn it without damaging it. But it seems to have turned over easier than we thought. This is the first time the guys have seen this side of the squid. And it seems there is… Read more »

The tank has arrived!

  • Planning angles: NHNZ film crew © Copyright Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, 2008
  • Planning filming angles . .
  • Anton Van Helden driving the forklift to get the tank into the autopsy room© Copyright Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, 2008
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Anton Van Helden driving the forklift to get the tank into the autopsy room – 3185 – © Copyright Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, 2008 After a couple of hours of waiting the tank has finally arrived – brought down from Palmerston North on a trailer. The plan is to get it into… Read more »

Formalin disposal

Preparing the pump

The formalin has been pumped out of the tank and the squid will be rinsed in fresh water before the lift on Wednesday. The specimen looks to be in good condition (considering!). The sucker rings and hooks are intact, so the buffering of the formalin solution worked well. The rip in the mantle is larger… Read more »

Preservatives

Glycol experiment - squid

Specimens in museum collections are usually preserved in a 70 per cent aqueous solution of ethyl alcohol or in a 2-4 per cent solution of formaldehyde (5-10 per cent formalin). The great disadvantages of ethyl alcohol are that it is flammable, it volatilizes very readily, it tends to produce precipitates from sea-water, and it causes… Read more »