Oregon State Parks and Recreation spokesman Chris Havel tells the Oregonian his office is hearing reports of dozens of what are probably Humboldt squid. He says they're typically much more common in warmer waters around Santa Cruz, Calif.
Havel says the carnivorous invertebrates could be at the end of their life cycle, or could be dying because of disease or lack of food. Humboldt, or jumbo squid, can grow up to 6 feet long and weigh as much as 100 pounds.
They've also showed up recently in waters off the Washington coast and in the Strait of Juan de Fuca between Washington state and British Columbia's Vancouver Island. Commercial fishermen in the strait complained the giant squid were grabbing the salmon right off their hooks. The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife has allowed the fishermen to sell the squid they accidentally catch as they troll for salmon.
NOAA oceanographer Kent Baltz of Santa Cruz said earlier a "strong hypothesis" for why the squid have moved north is that the ocean water is warmer than usual.