It’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s SUPERSQUID! Scientists in Japan have calculated that flying squid can actually fly through the air faster than Usain Bolt can run — and that’s pretty darn fast.
The team studied photos of the flying cephalopods in the Pacific Ocean and found out they can reach up to 11.2 meters per second. Comparing this to the 10.31 meters per second Bolt can dash down the track, that is pretty impressive.
The photos also prove that there are squid that actually fly through the air above the water and we’re not talking just one or two, the Japanese research team proves they do it en masse.
“There were always witnesses and rumours that such squid were seen flying, but no one had clarified how they actually do it. We have proved that it really is true,” Jun Yamamoto, of Hokkaido University, told the AFP news agency.
The squid actually shoot water through a nozzle near its head to propel itself through the air in emergencies, glide over the surface of the water like flying fish. Typically the squid swim through the water backwards using its fins but this unique airborne behavior has captured our attention.
“Once they finish shooting out the water, they glide by spreading out their fins and tentacles. The fins and the web between the tentacles create aerodynamic lift and keep the squid stable on its flight arc,” said Professor Yamamoto. “We have discovered that squid do not just jump out of the water, but have a highly developed flying posture. This finding means that we should no longer consider squid as things that live only in the water.
The team was tracking a group of 100 or so squids off around 370 miles from Tokyo when they snapped the pics of the flying squid.