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. dilberth

    This is a dire warning. Those anchovies deprive tuna and Harbor seals of their principle diet. Like a chain reaction, thousands of fish and seals will starve and die. Personally, I would like to see the Navy seals suddenly die off because they have been eating into the budget for far too long.

    March 8, 2011 at 7:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • Paris Hilton

      Captain Richard Phillips would likely disagree with you. Yeah, the 1/10th of 1% of the defense budget that SEAL teams are given is a terrible drain. Much like reading your moronic post.

      March 9, 2011 at 5:58 am | Report abuse |
  2. Joe

    sarah palin swam in the bay...

    March 8, 2011 at 7:37 pm | Report abuse |
  3. BobInIrvine

    Something's really fishy in King Harbor.

    March 8, 2011 at 7:38 pm | Report abuse |
  4. bob

    Its the end of the world as we know it

    March 8, 2011 at 7:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Elaine

      and I feel fine.

      March 8, 2011 at 7:50 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Haaaaha

    I keep forgetting, but is this the 3rd or 4th sign of the apocalypse?

    March 8, 2011 at 7:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Elaine

      I think it's the 9,654th, but who keeps track?

      March 8, 2011 at 7:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Wanda

      I was thinking the same thing! First birds falling from the sky and now fish turning belly up dead!

      March 8, 2011 at 9:09 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Papa John

    I say we make the Mother of all Caesar salads. That or make the Mother of all donations to Domino's pizza. What? Hold the anchovies? But it's free toppings night. Happy Mardi Gras pizza lovers.

    March 8, 2011 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse |
  7. demonfeed

    Okay, when you get this many fish coming into shallow water, they suck up the oxygen incredibly fast and suffocate themselves. I did see a dolphin or something splashing around, but from what the article says, they died a day or two ago. The oxygen level would have time to renew since then, but if tests are taken of the O2 content in the water, I can about guarantee you the levels are still lower than normal.

    The article states they died of oxygen deprivation, and this wouldn't be the first time a large fish kill was attributed to too many organisms in a smaller than normal space. But, if the local experts say they don't know yet, I would wait for their results over mine.

    That is the predominant reason for so many fish kills here lately, but the big question is why are so many large schools of fish trying to get to shallow water? Is there something out there scaring them? Or are we doing something that is attracting them to shallow water?

    March 8, 2011 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Papa John

      They heard that Charlie Sheen is having a Roast for Charlie's a fish fry!

      March 8, 2011 at 7:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • mtngrrll

      I say there are evil schemes afoot. Call in Dirk Pitt and the NUMA crew!

      March 8, 2011 at 8:14 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Ron San Bruno CA

    Has anone noticed if the koch brothers are docked in the harbor ?

    March 8, 2011 at 7:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Papa John

      koch...harbor...sounds like a fishy post to me.

      March 8, 2011 at 7:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • BobInIrvine

      I think the Kochs only care about "safe harbors." 🙂

      March 8, 2011 at 8:38 pm | Report abuse |
  9. bozo

    quoting "shamwow" " ... That's going to smell.."

    March 8, 2011 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Cesar

    People have been claiming the end of time for thousands of years. Scientists say that in 13 billion years, our sun will explode. So if I can live to 11 billion years, I'll be happy.

    March 8, 2011 at 7:52 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Ryan

    "Every year approximately 14 billion pounds of tires, cardboard boxes, plastic cups, bottles, cans, and other trash are dumped into the ocean. Some of this trash sinks, and some of it is eatenby ocean creatures. Most of this trash, especially plastic, floats and eventually this floating refuse, carried by ocean currents and waves washes up on beaches. Even in remote areas like Antarctica, researchers have found plastic bottles, bags, and sheeting washed ashore . Almost all of this trash can create problems for wildlife and people. The plastics, which can persist indefinitely, can be especially harmful."

    BOOM there is the problem................the human race is beginning to disgust me

    March 8, 2011 at 7:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Burbank


      March 8, 2011 at 8:09 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Shaan Phillips

    yea you will want to have everyone believe that theses fish are just dying all over the world but we believe that this is a sign leading to May 21, 2011 judgement day whether you agree or not. we all hard about the science religion to what is going on but we don't buy it because we know more from God's bible.

    March 8, 2011 at 7:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • Banta

      Is this a joke?

      March 8, 2011 at 10:02 pm | Report abuse |
  13. If it Smells Like fish

    Reminds me of that Joke. "A blind man walks past a fish market and says "Good morning Ladies".
    If it smells like fish, DON"T eat it.

    March 8, 2011 at 7:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Zinou

      No it should not. Do you mean cash aavcnde from your credit card? As long as you pay your credit card before or by the due date you should be fine. Why do you need to pay the car off so fast? you can always make your minimum payment on the car loan till your money hits the bank.

      March 14, 2012 at 11:03 pm | Report abuse |

    the industrial revolution drove this world into the dirt. we spent one hundred years acting like it was making everything bigger & better. rather than daydream of a future family & career, i'm enjoying life as i know it (while i still can.) we wont last another decade with all of the political (which led to mother nature turning against us) TURMOIL that continues to pile.

    March 8, 2011 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Arlon

      Get rid of the "TURM" in your post and we have the root of all today's problems.

      March 8, 2011 at 9:49 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Burbank

    I just took a closer look at that photo. You would expect every available surface on those boats to be covered with seagulls and other fish eating birds like Pelicans and also seals – where are they? The fact that they don't seem to be going for this free feast is really scary!

    March 8, 2011 at 8:06 pm | Report abuse |
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