While the giant squid itself was a remarkable discovery, in the short time since marine scientists defrosted the animal, they've already been even further amazed.
Marine scientists studying the carcass of a rare colossal squid said Wednesday they had measured its eye at about 11 inches across -- bigger than a dinner plate -- making it the largest animal eye on Earth.
One of the squid's two eyes, with a lens as big as an orange, was found intact as the scientists examined the creature while it was slowly defrosted at New Zealand's national museum, Te Papa Tongarewa. It has been preserved there since being caught in the Ross Sea off Antarctica's northern coast last year.
"This is the only intact eye (of a colossal squid) that's ever been found. It's spectacular," said Auckland University of Technology squid specialist Kat Bolstad, one of a team of international scientists brought in to examine the creature.
"It's the largest known eye in the animal kingdom," Bolstad told The Associated Press.
You can also read about scientists' thawing the giant squid on Tuesday.