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A rare encounter with a giant squid was caught on video when the mysterious creature from the deep emerged at a marina in the city of Toyama on Christmas Eve.

The squid measuring an estimated 3.7 meters long was spotted swimming beneath docked fishing boats at around 7 a.m. last Thursday.

Local people were surprised as giant squids rarely appear in shallow coastal waters.

“The squid was incredibly big,” Yuki Igushi, a curator at Uozu Aquarium in Toyama, told NHK, describing his feeling as he swam close to the creature. “The suckers were so powerful. When I touched one with my hands, it tried to stick to my body.

Tatsuya Wakasugi, a manager at the Mizuhashi Fisherina marina where the squid was spotted, told TV broadcaster Nippon Television Network he was amazed to see a living giant squid in shallow water.

“Maybe it was a Christmas present,” he said.

Akinobu Kimura, owner of the local Diving Shop Kaiyu, successfully captured the close-up footage of its red-and-white body.

He said he tried to lead the giant squid out of the marina and eventually it made its way to the deep ocean.

The giant squid, from the genus Architeuthis, is one of the largest known invertebrates. The life cycle of the giant squid, such as spawning sites and life span, remain a mystery.

The footage of the monster squid, reported by ANN News, had been viewed more than 2.6 million times as of Wednesday afternoon.

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