What to do when you need to defrost over 1,089 pounds of colossal squid? Haul out an industrial microwave oven, that’s what. The 33-foot sub-adult colossal squid (Mesonychoteuthis hamiltoni) in question was netted in Antarctic waters by New Zealand fishermen in February. After the fishing boat’s crew spent two hours reeling it in, the squid was immediately frozen for preservation onboard the ship. Now, after a two-hour flight back to New Zealand, scientists wish to study the creature in detail (and eventually, embalm it in preservative), but they fear that in the time it would take to defrost the entire squid at room temperature—days—the outer skin of the animal would begin to rot while the internal organs remained frozen. One possible solution is a sort of microwave oven used by the timber industry to improve wood permeability to preservative. Whatever they use, it’d better be big. A calamari ring from the kraken would be the size of a tractor tire. Alas, it would also taste strongly of ammonia, a prevalent chemical in giant-squid flesh that helps maintain neutral buoyancy underwater. Yum. —Martha Harbison
Link - BBC News
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