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. Lets keep it real

    Devil been loosed Again

    March 8, 2011 at 6:10 pm | Report abuse |
  2. RWKerr

    Looks like Charlie Sheen flushed his sash........

    March 8, 2011 at 6:11 pm | Report abuse |
  3. JJ

    Phew, bet it smells like my ex girlfriend.

    March 8, 2011 at 6:11 pm | Report abuse |
  4. johnny

    anchovy has doll's eyes.. lifeless eyes..

    March 8, 2011 at 6:11 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Lets keep it real

    Keeth in cali,That's wrong!I'm thanking God it hasn't happened like that!

    March 8, 2011 at 6:12 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Lets keep it real

    Life,and the Devil collide ,Ochaaa

    March 8, 2011 at 6:18 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Shaan Phillips

    May 21, 2011 is starting earlier whether we believe or not there is something coming soon this May 21, 2011 the judgement day. this may be a wake up call to all us to come to God and repent our many sins may be God can have mercy on some us and He will not destroy all us because we all deserve it. cry to God and humble yourself may God will forgive you.

    March 8, 2011 at 6:20 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Lee Oates

    Just pile them up with the dead birds, dead fish, dead porpoise, dead coral, etc. But don't worry, everythngs alright as long as we keep the oil flowing. Don't let those little oil and chemical spills bother you, or the growing number of dead spots in the oceans. We don't need all that oxygen anyway. You have at least another 10 years or so to enjoy your new Ipods or computers before the human species joins the pile of dead bodies.

    March 8, 2011 at 6:21 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Colleen

    I think it is probably a case of too many fish in the fish bowl. Looks like they all converged into the shallower marina area and just too many fish and not enough oxygen. They may have been herded in by predators and couldn't get out fast enough to get enough oxygen... just an idea though. That or the end of the world hits another strike!

    March 8, 2011 at 6:22 pm | Report abuse |
  10. denise

    GROSS! Global warming hits again that is what I think.

    March 8, 2011 at 6:22 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Lets keep it real

    Shaan ,Thanks Sweety

    March 8, 2011 at 6:25 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Human As Well

    There have been SO many news stories of mysterious mass animal deaths all over the world starting at New Years 2011 that, despite myself, I'm a little creeped out. Here's hoping there's simply been an unusual amount focus on these types of stories in the news, and not an actual unusual amount of mass deaths.

    March 8, 2011 at 6:26 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Rod C. Venger

    If that many fish swam into the protected harbor then they likely did die of oxygen deprivation. I raised tropicals for a living and you can only squeeze so many fish into a given area, and the area in the video has virtually no moving water. There's no wave action around the boats at all to reoxygenate the water. The clue is actually outside the harbor. If there's few or no dead fish washing up on the beaches, then they didn't die out there...they swam into the harbor and died there.

    March 8, 2011 at 6:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jason

      You're right.

      March 8, 2011 at 6:51 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Colleen

    Looks like just too many fish in the fishbowl to me... The anchovies school in massive amounts and somehow they ended up in the shallower (and therefore less oxygenated) marina area. So- fishies in a fish bow buh bye. Or end of the world in nigh... either one.

    March 8, 2011 at 6:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Colleen

      ok so it looks like I just said the exact same thing as the guy Rod Venger above me. Cept he said it better.

      March 8, 2011 at 6:31 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Texan

    The anchovies contain an oil that is highly lethal to aliens. If we discovered this, their mission could fail. Sorry little you little anchovies,....IT'S BATTTLE: CA

    March 8, 2011 at 6:29 pm | Report abuse |
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