Before the earthquake in Taiwan, fishermen caught the “doomsday fish” (2 photos + 1 video)

9 April 2024

There is a legend that before terrible natural disasters, an ominous fish rises to the surface from the bottom of the sea, which predicts death and destruction.

The legend is old about the messengers of the sea god who try to warn people about impending troubles, but it was remembered in 2011 before a strong earthquake in Japan, when 20 of these terrible fish washed ashore.

The “doomsday fish”, also known as oar fish or strap fish, lives at a depth of about 1 km and, in principle, does not like to rise to the surface.

A few hours before the earthquake in Taiwan, which became the strongest in the last 25 years, a Filipino fisherman caught this fish near Kalanggaman Island, a little far from Taiwan, but still. The fisherman himself was shocked, to put it mildly, by such a catch. It weighed up to 15 kg and was almost one and a half meters long.

A few hours later, Taiwan, neighboring the Philippines, was rocked by a powerful earthquake with a magnitude of 7.5.

Environmental seismologist Kiyoshi Wadatsumi told The Japan Times: "Deep-sea fish that live near the seafloor are more sensitive to the movements of active faults than those near the sea surface."

However, in 2019, the Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America dispelled notions of this connection with a report that concluded: “From this study, virtually no spatiotemporal relationship between the occurrence of deep-sea fish and earthquakes was found. Consequently, this Japanese folklore is considered a superstition attributed to an illusory relationship between two events."

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