Anchovies are considered an acquired taste even for connoisseurs, but unless you’re a seagull or a sea lion, no one could delight in the hundreds of thousands of dead smelly fish that invaded the Santa Cruz yacht harbor in Monterey Bay.
In an ecological calamity, the multitude of fish inundated the harbor and were killed when they overwhelmed the oxygen supply in the water. According to KSBW8, although thousands of the fish are floating on the surface of the water, there are thousands upon thousands lying dead on the bottom of the harbor.
NBC Bay area reported that even with aerators pumping in oxygen to the harbor, there still wasn’t enough to keep them alive. Moreover, on Thursday divers tried to save some of the fish that had not yet died. Officials say the same thing happened last year, but not to this extent.
According to Santa Cruz Harbormaster John Hayes, the massive anchovy death toll is the worst fish kill in Santa Cruz since the 1980s. Nevertheless, the fish have become a buffet for local sea lions and indigenous birds.
Aside from the wretched stench of the decaying fish, the remains are creating a chemical reaction that is bad for the boats and can cause damage to the hulls.