Monstrous squids and octopi lurk in the depths of the ocean, waiting for a passenger ship. Then their slithering tentacles breach the surface and feast on screaming tourists.
Different Types of Krakens
Krakens come in 2 varieties that resemble cephalopods common in the oceans. There’s a squid-like version and an octopus-like critter.
Krakens have serrated teeth on their suction cups. Once the suckers attach to you, the teeth cut into your skin to hook you. In some cases, they may secrete a neurotoxin to paralyze you. Some krakens may produce a bio-electric shock to stun you. It makes eating you so much easier.
And these critters are big. It’s believed that each can be as big as a Virginia-class submarine. Their beaks can open wide enough to swallow an armored van.
They’ve also got a tough hide. While they can’t sustain a naval gun bombardment, they can handle anti-tank guns.
Kraken Territory & Habitat
In a nutshell, krakens stick to temperate waters north of the Tropic of Cancer and south of the Tropic of Capricorn. It lines up with their much smaller cousins, the giant squid and colossal octopus.
I’m not sure why they avoid the warm waters at the equator. It likely deals with a lack of food for them in tropical waters.
There’s also one area krakens go that’s not so obvious on the maps: They will hunt in Antarctic waters, like a colossal squid. You’ll see below, krakens hunt the largest whales. And the biggest ones live in Antarctic waters.
I really don’t think krakens are averse to cold water. At the depths they live, the water is freezing. It would cause hypothermia in a few minutes for humans.
What Krakens Eat
I jest. Krakens go after the biggest marine wildlife in the ocean. Large whales (Blue Whales & Southern Right Whales) and Great White Sharks are favorite prey. When you’re as monstrous as a kraken, you need a big meal to eat.
However, these cephalopods may go after large schools of fish, especially off the coast of South Africa. Then it could use its tentacles to snare enough fish to eat. That’s a bit of work for a creature this big. I’d only expect it to do that if it’s starving.
You may ask why do krakens attack people, ships and submarines. There’s two reasons for that. One, starvation triggers the aggressive response. Two, it’s a defensive measure.
Humans have depleted large marine life populations. While some whale species have started to recover, it may not be enough for krakens. They’ll eat anything fleshy they can fit in their beaks.
As for defense, a kraken doesn’t have many predators. It could attack instinctively: A large silhouette may trick a kraken into seeing a threat. And cruise ships have really big silhouettes under water.
How to Escape a Kraken
You’re pretty much toast unless you’ve got some heavy weapons available.
Submarines have torpedoes. Battleships have turrets with big-ass guns. And you can always use missiles launched from jets. A kraken may have a tough hide, but it’s not going fight modern weaponry.
Now, if you’re on a cruise ship or sail boat, things don’t look so good. You’d never be able to out swim one if you go overboard. Its tentacles would wrap around your thrashing body and pull you into its beak for a good chomping. You can only hope it gets full before it gets to you.
TRIVIA: The plural form is one of the oddities in English: You can use either kraken or krakens.
Jacob Rice began investigating and writing about monsters in 2007. He has published 3 books on ghost hunting, ghost stories and paranormal protection. His podcast, Ghostly Activities, dives into these topics even more. You can also watch his ghost hunts on the Ghostly Activities YouTube channel. He lives in Olympia, Washington.