A few years ago, we organized a group of marine conservation scientists to meet to discuss, and list, the most urgent issues that need to be studied. The resulting paper came up with 71 questions which urgently needed to be addressed, because a lack of an answer was severely impeding marine conservation. However, during this exercise we also came up with a list of other questions – these were issues that were controversial, that everyone knew were important, but were unwilling to raise as being an issue. These were the Voldemorts of marine conservation questions (they that shall not be named), the elephant (or elephant seal) in the room questions …. or as we more aquatically termed them: “the kraken in the aquarium” questions.
No. No they did not.
I awoke this morning to a delightful flood of emails in my inbox pointing to this article: Has a KRAKEN been spotted on Google Earth? Monster hunters claim to have found 120m long giant squid-like creature. In short, while exploring the area around Deception Island on Google Earth, some well-known anomaly hunters found a weird thing.
Google maps is full of weird things. The planet is full of weird things. Weird things are awesome.
Rather than dig just a little bit deeper, they went on to wax poetic about giant squids, busted out some measurement tools to determine that it was 120m long, and promptly alerted the press. Also, another anomaly hunter says it’s a UFO.
Update: Since I can’t find an easily-accessible nautical chart of the island online, here’s a high resolution scan showing the rock and its relation to Deception Island.
Sorry, folks, it ain’t a 120 meter long Kraken or an Underwater UFO. It’s a rock.
Originally of Norwegian and Icelandic legend, the Kraken is described as a giant, tentacled monster that rises from the deep. In the earliest legends, the Kraken resembles an island feeding on schools of fish. Bold fishermen would set their lines above the Kraken, catching the huge schools of fish that surround it. In these earliest stories, the danger to ships was not from the Kraken itself, but from the whirlpool formed when it dives.
Charlie squares off against the mighty Kraken!