The scene: nightshift, RV Langseth main deck, around 3am. Cold night (well Mediterranian cold, but I’m fragile) strong winds.
The 12-4 crew is hard at work doing OBS recovery work. Hanging hooks and ropes overboard to catch the floating seismic instruments as the ship passes close by them.
Everyone is on deck waiting for the next intsrument to surface from the depths. I’m spacing out slightly. Suddenly, something moves strangely in the corner of my eye. I turn in time catch something very small and light as it arcs 12 feet over the ships deck, through the middle of the A-frame crane.
What could this be? We are miles from land, it’s the middle of the night. Perhaps some sort of rouge bird or sea debris. A couple crew members and I run to check it out.
We find our mysterious high-flier flopping around under the stored airguns. A small squid! It’s only about six inches long and squirming it’s tentacles around, seeming unhappy about it’s new real estate.
I stopped to snap a few pictures to remember the brave pioneer by and then tossed him back into his ocean home. Likely he was much less thrilled by his visit than I. However the 20 feet of air that squid gained on his mad leap on board will not soon be forgotten.