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Do Oarfish Lead to Earthquakes? Japanese Folklore Says Yes

By Joe Buttitta, KEYT NewsChannel 3 Anchor/Reporter, jbuttitta@keyt.com
Published On: Oct 22 2013 07:34:28 PM CDT

Scientists say earthquakes can't be predicted. Or can they?

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -

Scientists say earthquakes can't be predicted. Or can they?

Dead Oarfish have been found twice along Southern California beaches in recent weeks. And according to Japanese legend, Oarfish will beach themselves to warm humans of an impending earthquake. Sure, it's only folklore but it has come true before.

In 2011, fisherman in Japan began to see tons of oarfish. Just months later Japan was hit by the deadly Fukushima quake and tsunami, killing 18,000 people.

So is it fact, or just Japanese legend?

Until a few weeks ago very few people had heard of an oarfish, even less had actually seen one.

The giant, sea monster looking oarfish has washed up twice on Southern California Beaches. The first one measured 18 feet long and was found off of Catalina Island, the other a 14 footer spotted on a beach in Orange County. 

Scientists say the fish is so rare that many of them had never actually seen one themselves. Samples of the sea serpent are now being tested at UC Santa Barbara.

As for the Japanese legend and earthquakes, it depends on how you look at it.

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