Public dissection of giant squid

11 July, 2008

Giant squid
Giant squid
Image: Paul McCoy
Source: DPI Victoria

On Thursday 17th of July, Melbourne Museum held its first ever public dissection by Museum scientists of a giant squid.

The dissection was performed in the Science and Life Gallery from 11.30 am till 1 pm. The dissection was streamed live, and a recording can be viewed here or downloaded.

The squid which was accidentally caught in a fishing trawl off western Victoria, weighs around 245 kg, making it the largest giant squid that Australian researchers have encountered. It is estimated that, intact, the animal would have been over 12 metres long.

"This is the first time the Museum has done a dissection in a public forum, and we expect the interest to be enormous," said Dr Mark Norman, world-renowned squid expert and Deputy Head of Science (Marine Zoology), Museum Victoria.

"With this public dissection, we hope to achieve greater awareness and understanding of these little-known and rarely-seen deep-sea creatures."

Comments (12)

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rahmanuddin 29 December, 2009 20:56
good practice
Janette Wilmott 17 March, 2010 08:47
Your film of the Public Dissection of a Giant Squid is first class. Congratualtions on the idea, as well as the knowledge and capacity-to-relate-to-layperson of the expert. I am learning designer with the NSW Department of Education and am currently designing a game for students about the giant squid. One and a half hours is a long time for students to watch the video so, I'm wondering if the film is able to be watched in any other format eg segments, or if I would be able to have access to a copy of the film footage so that I could put it in video-player software in segments. Regards Janette Wilmott (Centre for Learning Innovation)
winnie 17 March, 2010 09:53
how beautiful x]
Discovery Centre 17 March, 2010 16:02

We're pleased you all enjoyed this. Janette - a ten-minute version of the film is available at this part of our website. Will this suffice for your purposes? If not, get in touch with us over here and we'll endeavour to help out further.

Aylah Taylor 20 July, 2010 11:17
I find these animal's to be very, ' interesting ' I would really like to see one up close.
Discovery Centre 21 July, 2010 14:08

Hi Aylah, you might be interested to know that the giant squid is actually on display in the Marine Life section of the Museum.

Carolyn 14 November, 2010 20:36
Fantastic video, thank you very much for putting it here for everyone to view. Can't wait to go to the museum and see it for myself!
sahar fletcher 26 January, 2011 03:39
was the squid dead when you found it or did you kill just to disect it? but that is very fascinating I was wondering what did you do after you disected the squid did you put up for display for the whole world to see?
Discovery Centre 27 January, 2011 16:54
Hi Sahar - the squid was caught in a commercial fishing net and was dead by the time it had reached the boat. After the dissection, the squid remains were preserved and are currently being studiedd to help us understand the genetic diversity
waituntilthis 24 June, 2017 19:41
hey i'm sorry but i cant help wondering why the individuals were touching the specimen without gloves? i mean if you would get rid of it it would make sense but it is being preserved, wouldn't that shorten the preservation time?
R.C.Cooper 30 June, 2011 13:00
I love it! I love it! more more more
Daniela 9 April, 2013 10:08
It was very gross however interesting
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