If you spend much time on social networks, you may have came across a viral photo of a giant squid that allegedly washed ashore along the Santa Monica coast line. The photo shows a huge squid and several people standing on the beach staring at the monster. At first glance the photo looks pretty believable but unfortunately, it is a hoax.
The article that accompanies the photos claims that the beast was 160 feet from the head to tentacle tip. It goes on to say, “Scientists believe that following the 2011 disaster at the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant an unknown number of sea creatures suffered genetic mutations that triggered uncontrolled growth – or ‘radioactive gigantism,’”
Many people have fallen for the fake news article and millions have shared the photo on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. The fake photo and article first appeared on the website, The Lightly Braised Turnip. The site is known for fake news stories but does not add disclaimers to them. The fake photo was made using Photoshop.
A real giant squid was found washed ashore at La Arena beach in Cantabria, Spain in October 2013, but it was no where near as big as the fake squid in the photo. The real giant squid was only 30 feet long, which is still pretty big.
Giant squids have been caught on video before, but they are rarely seen. They prefer to stay in deeper parts of the ocean where they hunt and live in secrecy. The largest species of giant squid known to mankind grows to be about 40 feet in length.
Did you fall for the giant squid photo hoax or do you know a fake when you see one?
Image via Lightly Braised Turnip