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Mystery giant eyeball may be squid's

4:37 PM, Oct 13, 2012   |    comments
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission shows a giant eyeball from an unknown creature that washed ashore in Pompano Beach, Fla. (Photo: Carli Segelson, AP)
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by Yamiche Alcindor, USA TODAY
A huge, softball-size eyeball that washed ashore in Pompano Beach, Fla. may have come from a deep sea squid or a large sword fish, the Associated Press reports.

A man spotted the eyeball Wednesday and reported it to Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, which has sent it off for study to identify the creature to which it belongs.

The internet and marine biology community has been buzzing about the eye since the commission shared a photo of it on its Facebook page. People are suggesting it came from everything from a giant squid to Bigfoot.

The blue eyeball may have come from a deep sea squid or a large sword fish, said Heather Bracken-Grissom, an assistant professor in the marine science program at Florida International University in Miami.

"Any time something weird and crazy washes up on the beach, it's definitely interesting," she told the AP. "It's going to be very interesting to see what the genetic analysis shows."

The professor and her colleagues concluded that the eyeball's lens and pupil are similar in shape to that of a deep sea squid. She noted that a deep sea squid's eyeball can be as large as a soccer ball and can easily become dislodged.

Officials won't really know where the eyeball came from until testing at the Florida Fish and Wildlife Research Institute in St. Petersburg is complete.

USA TODAY

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