A Squidtastic Journey to Redondo’s Submarine Canyon
An unseasonably early squid run has surprised SCUBA divers this week in Santa Monica Bay — with thousands of opalescent squid mating and laying eggs in Redondo Submarine Canyon.
Spurred on by reports from my diver-extraordinaire friend, Claudette, we headed out to dive off Vet’s Park in the wee hours of the morning on August 27. What a dive it was!
After mating en masse, the female squid carefully lay their single egg cluster into collective egg baskets at about 60-90 feet below, on the slopes of Redondo’s Submarine Canyon. Everyone’s getting in on the action! Surrounding the squid and egg baskets are animals from up and down the food chain — from target shrimp, to sea lions, to rock crabs- feasting on the dead squid!
Local divers are surprised by how early the squid are running — usually we see them in the winter months, and we haven’t seen a run like this since 2005 and 2007 — a beautiful natural phenomenon in our local waters.
The eggs will be around waiting to hatch for the next 3-5 weeks, but this is the week to see thousands of squid mating off Vet’s Park. Most of my diver friends are re-arranging their work schedules to get out there to experience this squidtastic event — definitely not to be missed!
—Dana Roeber Murray
Heal the Bay’s Marine & Coastal Scientist