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Another sign of the times? Sea stars experiencing large die-off

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The recent die-off of the Pacific sea stars (starfish) is extreme, the most extreme in known history, and is considered a sentinel of change. In some areas, they're growing extinct, and the list of areas is ever increasing.

According to diver Laura James,

“I’d heard that the sea stars were dying en mass but this was beyond my imagination....It was like carnage or a mass grave. Dead and dying sea stars, body on top of body.”

Another diver and member of the Kelp Krawlers Dive Club, Olympia, Washington, also described the phenomenum,

"It's like they become zombies of the sea. I saw a leg walking away by itself." Don Noviello

This disease is a mystery that seems to have come from nowhere rapidly without warning, and is causing an unprecedented alarm in marine biologists. Some claim it could be a parasite or natural disease affecting the oceans while others suggest it might be a result of nuclear radiation

Last year, nuclear radiation from Japan's crippled Fukushima power plant was being detected in bluefin tuna caught near San Diego.

"As far back as early 2012, nuclear radiation from the Fukushima power plant was being detected in bluefin tuna off California’s coast. Months earlier, cesium-137 was being found in almost all Japanese seafood being sold in Canada, with 100 percent of seaweed, carp, monkfish and shark showing detectable levels. Even with Japanese scientists finding high cesium levels in plankton all across the Pacific, the FDA has continued to claim that there is no need to test any seafood.

August of this year, Canadian biologists near Vancouver Island discovered herring bleeding out of their eyes and gill, while members of Canada’s aboriginal community began simultaneously reporting historically low Skeena River sockeye salmon returns." Source

Starfish is a marine invertebrate, typically with a central disc and five arms. Some species have the ability to regenerate or even completely regrow lost arms, and they can shed arms if necessary to protect their main body from harm. Highly adaptable, some starfish have been documented to live as long as 34 years.

Most starfish are opportunistic predators, eating snails and other small animals while some species are better suited toward eating decomposing organic material. They are ecologically important and are needed to keep marine life balance. Hopefully the mystery of their die-off will be solved and reversed before the entire west coast experiences a devastating chain reaction.

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