Jumbo Humboldt squid invade Southern California waters

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cc: Sheraz Sadiq/flickr/KQEDQuest

Like other cephalopods, the Humboldt squid's skin is covered in muscle-bound chromatophores, specialized skin cells that can rapidly change color.

Jumbo squid have invaded Southern California waters and are being caught by sport fishermen by the hundreds.

The squid were first spotted on the surface a few days ago, and a boat captain reported seeing them from as far south as the U.S.-Mexico border to Dana Point in Orange County.

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Fishermen went just four miles from Oceanside Sunday night to reel in 200 Humboldt squid, according to the U-T San Diego.

The squid are feeding on an abundance of krill that has come into the region's water from tidal flows, and they're typically at or near the surface when it's dark.

The Humboldt squid is also called the jumbo squid or jumbo flying squid and squirts ink to protect itself.

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