The giant squid, or genus Architeuthis, is a deep-sea dwelling squid. It can grow to tremendous sizes, and in recent estimates put the maximum size at 13 meters (43 feet) for females and 10 meters (33 feet) for males from the posterior fins to the tip of the two long tentacles. The mantle is about 2 meters (6.6 feet) and the length of the squid excluding the tentacles rarely exceeds 5 meters (16 feet) but bigger sizes have yet to be documented. The number of different species of giant squid have been debated but recent genetic research suggests that so far only one species exists.
In 2004, Japanese researchers took the first images of a live giant squid in its natural habitat, and in 2012 a live adult was filmed in its natural habitat of Chichi-jima.