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18-foot-long oarfish found on California's Catalina Island in October, 2013

Oarfish Found on California’s Catalina Island

A 14-foot oarfish washed up on Pebbly Beach on California’s Catalina Island Monday morning. This marine animal likely weighed around 200 pounds and is the third of this species to wash up on Catalina in the past two years. This particular oarfish could have measured as long as 24 feet but was missing its tail, which oarfish have been known to self-amputate to shed weight and save energy.

The oarfish is the world’s longest bony fish and can reach lengths of over 50 feet and weigh up to 600 pounds. There is little known about this species because they frequent depths around 3,300 feet and are only seen at the surface when they are distressed or dying.

The 14-foot oarfish on Catalina was studied by two California conservationists and a local marine biologist who are delving into what has caused this species to wash onto shore. Read more about it here:

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/14-foot-fish-found-washed-ashore-catalina-island-article-1.2328797

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