Second Oarfish In A Week Washes Ashore
For the second time in a week, a rare serpentine oarfish has surfaced on a Southern California beach, NBC reports.
The one found Friday afternoon at Oceanside Harbor wasn't quite as large as the 18-foot behemoth found near Catalina Island. This one was only 13-and-a-half feet long. It weighed an estimated 200 pounds and took 15 people to carry.
That is actually quite small for an oarfish. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, it's the largest bony fish in the sea and can grow to more than 50 feet long.
Oceanside Police Officer Mark Bussey told NBC that they received a call of a "possible dead whale stranded on the beach." Bussey recognized it from news reports of the previous oarfish. He then contacted SeaWorld San Diego and NOAA. Suzanne Kohin of NOAA Fisheries Serivice measured and took the oarfish for research.
Little is known about the species, since it's usually found thousands of feet below the surface.
Bussey said that people on the beach were "flabbergasted" to see the fish. "It's not the typical fish you see on shore," he said. Well, not until recently.
Syfy Channel is surely already prepping an "oarfish-tsunami" film.