Re: Humboldt squid invade coast

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Posted by Max Bottomtime on June 03, 2007 at 10:38:30:

In Reply to: Humboldt squid invade coast posted by on June 02, 2007 at 15:36:27:

Jumbo squid are found on San Pedro shore
Fishermen excited about rare appearance of Humboldt squid in local waters.
By Josh Grossberg
Staff Writer

It's been a while since Larry Fukuhara has seen a jumbo squid in the waters off San Pedro.

But on Wednesday, he found seven carcasses washed ashore. On Thursday, he discovered two more. There weren't any on Friday, but with the grunion set to appear late tonight on Cabrillo Beach, he suspects he'll find more.

"It's not the first time, but it's been years," said Fukuhara, programs director of the Cabrillo Marine Aquarium.

The Humboldt squid, which normally hang out near Mexico, have also been seen around Marina del Rey and as far north as Monterey.

"Even right now on the back of Catalina, we have squid," Fukuhara said.

Fukuhara figured that the corpses, which had been eaten away by sea gulls, were carried to land by the surf while they were feeding.

"We think most likely they're going after grunion and all of a sudden, a wave brings them to the beach," he said.

The animals can grow as long as 12 feet, but the ones found were about 5 feet.

He said the squid probably swam north following pockets of warm water.

What was bad news for grunion and other small prey was good news for local anglers, who swooped in to catch them.

"It's not a common occurrence, but it's a good occurrence," said Doug "Moose" Whigham. "A lot of people like to eat them."

Whigham said anglers over the weekend will keep an eye out for the tentacled cephalopods, which can be caught without restriction by anybody with a fishing license.

They normally swim hundreds of feet underwater, but can be lured to the surface with bright lights.

"On Saturday and Sunday, we're targeting sand bass and calico bass," he said. "But if the squid come up, we'll fish for the squid."

The squid can weigh upwards of 50 pounds.

"That's a lot of calamari," Whigham said.

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