On the Air: July 31, 2016

The Humboldt squid is big, fast, and scary. It can grow up to six feet long and weigh a hundred pounds, and it swims fast enough to jet out of the water and fly for short distances. As for the “scary” part, its two tentacles are lined with suckers, each of which is ringed by sharp “teeth.” The Humboldt uses those teeth to grab prey, which it then pulls toward a sharp beak that rips the prey to shreds.

In Print: July 1, 2016

The hagfish is one of those animals that scientists aren’t quite sure how to classify. These bottom-feeders have a skull but no backbone. Like lampreys, they have no jaw, but then lampreys do have vertebrae. Hagfish look like eels, but with naked skin instead of scales. They can survive up to 36 hours without oxygen — while their hearts keep beating — and they’ve been around for more than 350 million years, long, long before the first dinosaurs ever walked the Earth.