Planet Earth

20
Mar

Giant Squid Are One Species Worldwide

Kai Kupferschmidt, writing for Science Magazine’s Science Now:

Gilbert and colleagues from all over the world have analyzed the genetics of giant squid for the first time. The data “corroborates what has been said earlier using morphological criteria,” says Steve O’Shea, a longtime expert on giant squids who worked at Auckland University of Technology in New Zealand until 2011: that there is only one species, globally distributed, of giant squid. But the results also deepen the mystery surrounding these enigmatic creatures. The researchers found startlingly little genetic variation, raising questions about the species’ recent history.

A nice reminder that parts of our home planet remain unexplored.