March 8th, 2011
01:35 PM ET

Millions of dead anchovies float to surface in Redondo Beach

Enough anchovies to top much of the world’s pizza and Caesar salads have floated lifelessly to the surface in Redondo Beach, California's King Harbor, according to a local newspaper.

Officials say millions of the pungent, oily fish are covering the sea bottom in the harbor. They began rising to the surface Tuesday morning, the Daily Breeze in Torrance, outside Los Angeles, reported.

“We need to get rid of them,” Sgt. Phil Keenan of the Redondo Beach Police Department told the paper. “This is going to create a terrible pollution and public health issue if we don't.”

Fire, police and public works officials have yet to cite a definite cause, but Keenan said the fish appear to have died from lack of oxygen.

There were no red tides (oxygen-depleting algae blooms) or other obvious phenomena that could have caused the mass deaths, the paper reported.

“Yesterday, everything looked absolutely normal,” Walter Waite, who lives at the harbor, told the newspaper. “This morning when I got up, there were millions and millions of them floating everywhere.”

The temperature in Southern California is expected to climb into the 70s Tuesday, exacerbating the urgency of removing the scads of 6-inch fish scattered throughout the harbor.

Read CNN's full coverage of the dead anchovies in a California harbor
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Filed under: Animals • California • Environment • Nature • U.S.
soundoff (493 Responses)
  1. OH NO

    NOT THE ANCHOVIES!!!! ANYTHING BUT THE ANCHOVIES!!!!

    March 8, 2011 at 4:55 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Terry

    Note so self: I really need to get off my duff and make more aluminum foil hats to sell to these people.

    March 8, 2011 at 4:55 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Anchovies with my Supreme Pizza Please

    This is what happens when too many people eat Taco Bell Mega Meals before hitting the water!!! – The poor anchovies were trying to make a “Run for the Border” but the pure essence of the Pinto Beans was too much even for these little “Stinkers”

    March 8, 2011 at 4:59 pm | Report abuse |
  4. mj

    I heard they all made a pact to hold their breath until CBS re-hired Charlie Sheen

    March 8, 2011 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
  5. LeopardsDad

    What I am wondering about is, I didn't see any of those fish washed up on the beach outside the marina in the video! If that is the case I think water samples in the marina, just might be needed!

    March 8, 2011 at 5:02 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Joan

    Who cares! We eat them anyways!

    March 8, 2011 at 5:02 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Stacie

    "Fire, police and public works officials have yet to cite a definite cause, but Keenan said the fish appear to have died from lack of oxygen."

    If they did indeed die from lack of oxygen, the school most likely swam into a dead zone.

    March 8, 2011 at 5:04 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Ttata

    I saw Sarah Palin took a bath there the day before, so it has to be contamination.

    March 8, 2011 at 5:08 pm | Report abuse |
  9. cesium

    So...who dumped their fuel in the harbor?

    March 8, 2011 at 5:11 pm | Report abuse |
  10. tiabear

    Just make sure to carry an umbrella on the beach. We wouldn't want any seagulls to plop on anyones head!!

    March 8, 2011 at 5:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rene

      i found it friday and have aearldy finished! thank you for sharing your story helps to know we are not alone in the recovery journey.

      March 12, 2012 at 12:34 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Jeff

    Of course, if we ignore these mini-ecodisasters, they'll just keep happening and we will lose everything we take for granted.

    March 8, 2011 at 5:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • Cthulhu

      Does that mean if I take you for granted that you will get lost?

      March 8, 2011 at 7:18 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Gary

    Our local caterers have been notified.

    March 8, 2011 at 5:20 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Brian

    I never order anchovies on my pizza anyway.

    March 8, 2011 at 5:21 pm | Report abuse |
  14. vence

    Something is really fishy!

    March 8, 2011 at 5:31 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Chuck Norris

    I was fishing

    March 8, 2011 at 5:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Gabriel

      I give unto thee the power to bring about the Divine Apocalypse....
      It is time to round house kick the planet.

      March 8, 2011 at 5:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chuck Norris Rules

      We should have known. It was the only logical explanation. Did you individually roundhouse kick each anchovy?

      March 8, 2011 at 6:41 pm | Report abuse |
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