It's Official: Flying Squid Can Actually Fly (Not Just Jump)

February 11, 2013


Yay, now let's fill the oceans with concrete and put a stop to this madness.

I wrote about flying squid way back in 2010, but now they're back in the news after marine biologists have confirmed that the squids are actually flying (up to 30m/98-feet!) when they leap out of the water and not just jumping. *waving finger* Mother Nature, did you have something to do with this?! "Tehehehehe." Dammit woman, what did I tell you? "Wear a bra." You're like 4-billion years old, nobody wants to see that.

According to the researchers, the squid is able to accomplish this by shooting a powerful jet of water out from their funnel-like stems. Once they're out of the water, they glide by spreading out their fins and arms. This configuration creates aerodynamic lift, enabling the squid to keep a stable arc on its flight. Consequently, the researchers say the squid is truly flying, and not just jumping. And indeed, the technique allows the squid to remain airborne for as much as three seconds at a time.

Great, so now even the squids are flying. And look at us -- still walking around on two legs like a bunch of losers. "Speak for yourself." What, you can fly now? "No, but I'm not a loser." Why is it every time I try to include you and I in the same group you refuse? "We're mutually exclusive." Wait -- are you telling me you want to see other people?!

Hit the jump for a closeup of one of the little flyers and a diagram explaining how the squids do it.



Thanks to Catherine, who agrees as soon as whales start flying, well, it's time to lasso one and ride it to the moon.

  • Rob Anonymous

    The Flying Squid Flying Squad?

  • Cthulhu rises!

  • Excellent! Just like in Minecraft!

  • Joel

    they are gliding, not flying. There is a difference. Flying squirrels, flying lizards and these squids propel themselves and use flaps on their bodies to allow the winds to keep them aloft for a short period. Birds and bats move through the air of their own accord. The writers need to buy themselves a dictionary.

  • Antonio Java

    This article doesn't actually explain it very well, but other sources (such as this: ) elaborate it better. Scientists are officially declaring it "flight" because unlike gliders like flying fish that use inertia and aerodynamics to stay airborne, these squid also use propulsion in the form of water jets while airborne. That's powered flight, basically using the same principle as modern jet aircraft: Wings (small as they may be in this case) for lift, and forced ejection of compressed matter for forward movement. Short as the distances are, it is still technically powered flight.

  • BMan56

    Maybe we should just rename them gliding squirrels and gliding lizards... Either way, gliding means unpowered flight.

  • How has Blooper from Super Mario not been mentioned yet?!

  • Idlethoughts

    My future minions...

  • Jeremy Tilton

    Concrete in the oceans won't help us against flying snakes:


  • Copedizzle

    They jump out of the ocean and fly right into a hentai video.

  • David Bruno

    That's like saying Buzz Lightyear can fly. ;)

  • Vee Böllert


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