This astonishing footage shows a rare encounter between a paddleboarder and a giant squid.

The giant squid was found injured, floating amongst the waves, when paddleboarder James Taylor decides to get a closer look. The incident occurred off the coast of Melkbosstrand, South Africa — and is definitely one-of-a-kind. 

Taylor decides to catch the animal by slinging a yellow cord around its body. The giant squid is drawn closer and reaches out, wrapping its tentacles around the body of the board. At one point the animal is directly beneath the board and knocks the paddleboarder into the water.

Giant squid are deep sea dwellers that grow to enormous sizes, averaging thirty feet in length and weighing up to six hundred pounds.

After capturing the injured specimen, Taylor draws it in to shore. Although he tried contacting aquariums, they were all closed for the holiday.

IFL Science relays the paddleboarder stating, “we dissected it and took a bunch of videos and photos that we later sent to them so that they could at least have a look at what we found. They sent these on to a professor who has been studying giant squid in South Africa for the last 15 years and he was very excited about the find. He told me the next day that he has only seen five wash up on South African shores since he started his studies. He confirmed that it was a mature male giant squid.”

This is definitely not something you see every day.