The giant squid display is located on the first floor of the Global Environment Hall. This is the largest vertically presented squid in the world. Creating this display was extremely difficult. With the base, acrylic case and formalin solution, it weighs four tons. This giant squid specimen can be clearly observed from three sides including structures such as ring-like teeth and funnel-like water outlet on its sucking disc.
This species of giant squid (Architeuthis sanctipauli) belongs to Phylum Mollusca, Class Cephalopoda, Order Teuthida and Family Architeuthidae. It measures 8.84 meters in length and weighs 240 kilograms. It was captured off of the coast of New Zealand and donated to the museum by researchers from the New Zealand National Institute of Water & Atmospheric Research.
Its eyes are very developed. Its diet mainly consists of fish and other cephalopods. Members of the same species often fight with and kill one another. The sperm whale is the giant squid’s natural predator. Sperm whales will dive down into giant squid’s habitats to hunt them. Scientists have found numerous remnants of giant squid in the stomachs of sperm whales, confirming that they are a major food source for sperm whales. Not much is known about the life history of giant squid. From December to March they appear off the coast of New Zealand to reproduce. However, from about April they disappear without a trace. Their spawning and other activity areas remain unknown.