A famously elusive and tentacled sea creature has made a rare appearance off South Africa’s western coast.

Paddle boarder James Taylor said he saw something weird floating in the surf one day, but he never could have guessed what he was about to encounter.

“I first spotted the body floating behind the waves when I was walking down to the beach to go for a paddle,” Taylor reportedly told Earth Touch News. “I thought it was a big piece of kelp, then I thought it was a piece of plastic, but that also didn’t look right. It was only when I got closer that I saw it was a squid of some sort.”

It turns out, the squid had been badly injured – likely due to a fight against a sperm whale attempting to make it a meal – and Taylor decided to haul it to shore.

Despite some saying Taylor was interfering with wildlife, he stands by his decision and says the squid was clearly in grave condition, noting that it was lethargic, missing several tentacles and covered with bite marks.

Watch the full video of this bizarre squid encounter below:

P.S. check out all the razor sharp teeth inside the tentacles of this squid!

Image is a screenshot from the YouTube video

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