Friday, August 21, 2015

‘Unbelievable!’: Scientists stunned as 3 rare giant oarfish found dead off Los Angeles in recent weeks — Flesh falling apart while still alive, body parts missing — Biologist: “Of course I’m very concerned… for some reason they’re dying… it’s very strange” — Being tested for toxins (VIDEO)

Los Angeles Times, Aug 17, 2015 (emphasis added): Biggest oarfish seen at Catalina Island in years washes ashore… marking a rare sighting of the deep-sea creature… [It] was 24 feet long when it was alive, said Annie MacAulay, a marine biologist… its tail [was] severed off — which oarfish have been known to do to shed weight and save energy, she said… The one found Monday had an empty pocket in its stomach, which MacAulay said could mean it recently stopped eating, a potential sign of distress or sickness… a handful of oarfish [have] washed up on California’s coasts in recent years.
New York Daily News, Aug 17, 2015: Stunned scientists fished for clues Monday to explain the origin of the giant oarfish that washed up on the shores of Catalina — the third massive marine oarfish found on the island in two years’ time [see articles below for additional finds]… The sleek silver fish was missing its pectoral fins and tailperplexed researchers are looking for a reason why. Dr. Misty Paig-Tran from California State University Fullerton collected tissue samples… to determine whether it had any toxins in its system. But questions still remain as to why these fish are dying… The conservationist also speculated that water pollution could be to blame.

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