Redondo Beach California, Kings Harbor, millions of dead Anchovies (and Sardines which are nearly identical) were discovered during the morning of March 8 clogging parts of the harbor. It is literally a ‘Sea of Sardines’ many feet thick, not just on the surface, but also 1 to 2 feet thick on the bottom.
Some residents are saying that in all their life they’ve never seen such a dramatic fish kill as this. Others are wondering if the Anchovies / Sardines are like the canary in the coal mine and perhaps an undersea seafloor release of sulfur dioxide or methane may have killed them and could be a sign of an impending earthquake. All speculation of course.
One ‘official’ explanation so far is that “they were trying to flee the red tide and they all suffocated”. Another is that the Anchovies were all blown into the harbor last night during excessive winds, and all suffocated from low oxygen levels.
So far there have been no reports at all of a red tide in the area, and are usually quite visible when they occur. Additionally, a red tide event would logically effect more than just a single variety of fish, in this case Anchovies (Sardines), and no other significant observations have been reported yet. The LA Times did mention Mackerel as well as the Anchovies and Sardines, but as far as the eye can see in the images, it’s all Anchovies and Sardines.
Some wonder why we don’t see tremendous flocks of seabirds or gulls in the photo images, taking natural advantage of an enormous free meal(s).
In any event, it is quite a spectacle, and time will tell if this is a case of ‘bad weather’, ‘red tide’, or something else…
Got your earthquake kit ready?
Links to Anchovy Fish Kill articles
(LA Times) Millions of dead fish at King Harbor in Redondo Beach
(KTLA) Millions of Dead Fish Wash Up in Redondo Beach
(DailyBreeze) Billions of dead fish invade Redondo’s King Harbor