The Mystery of the dead fish on the Marazion beach solved
Whist the MMO web post on the Dec 19th left the reason for the fish on the beach as unknown the fishermen involved have owned up ….
While some blamed bad weather or predation for beaching at Marazion at St Michael’s Mount, the fish were in fact dumped by a trawler for safety reasons. The mystery of why hundreds of thousands of fish were found washed up on a Cornish beach over the weekend has been solved: they were dumped by a trawler that caught too many sardines in shallow water.
After a photographer happened on the huge shoal of dead fish on Marazion at St Michael’s Mount beach, various explanations were offered for her eerie discovery – just two weeks after a similar sighting on another Cornish beach. Bad weather out at sea and attempts by the fish to escape large predators were both suggested as explanations. However, according to Gus Caslake, the chairman of the Cornish Sardine Management Association, one of its member vessels was responsible. It had been following shoals of fish that were closer to the shoreline than normal this winter, and was forced to release large numbers after it caught too many to safely pull aboard.
The Cornwall Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority (Cifca) and the UK government regulator, the Marine Management Organisation (MMO), have launched investigations into the two incidents.
Simon Cadman, Cifca’s principal enforcement officer, told the Guardian that “it’s likely that the fishing in that area has been the cause of the problem” in both cases.