Marine Biologist: All the sea stars along west coast of North America could be wiped out — Some developing ‘bald spots’; “Others look completely healthy except for guts coming out” — ‘Speculation’ it could be related to Fukushima

Published: December 12th, 2013 at 8:59 pm ET


Times Colonist, Dec. 10, 2013: […] The mysterious illness has the potential to wipe out all the sea stars along the west coast of North America, said Paula Romagosa, a marine biologist and curator at the Shaw Ocean Discovery Centre in Sidney. “Events like this have happened before but on a much smaller scale. We’ve never seen one of this magnitude.” The die-off of sea stars was first detected in August in small pockets in Howe Sound, off West Vancouver and in Indian Arm. Since then, the extensive die-off has been reported along the shoreline from Alaska to California. […] The virus affects the animals in different ways. A sea star at the Shaw Ocean Discovery Centre showed it was unwell by developing a bald spot. […] Others look completely healthy except for their guts coming out in strings. […] There is speculation that the die-off could be due to water-borne radiation originating from the Fukushima nuclear plant. Romagosa said that doesn’t sound likely because the first place it was seen was in a remote area of Indian Arm and not the west coast. […] “It could be chemicals that are released into the water from pulp mills or factories” […]

Chemicals released into Vancouver waters could be causing this unprecedented die-off stretching from Mexico to Alaska? Though the leading edge of Fukushima’s radioactive particles may be just now arriving on North American shores via the ocean, see the list of links below for data on airborne contamination on the west coast that occurred soon after 3/11.

Cedar Street Times, Dec. 7, 2013 (emphasis added): Here in Pacific Grove, [Pacific Grove resident John Pearse, a Professor Emeritus from the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at UC Santa Cruz] reports that divers have spotted diseased sea stars in the kelp forest near Hopkins Marine Lab. “They recently told me that there are almost no stars left except bat stars that seem to be more resistant,” states Pearse. […] In the face of speculation that […] Fukashima* radioactivity may be affecting our area, Pearse says no […] “It is my understanding that there has been little or no detectable increase in radioactivity on our coast since that disaster. Yes, some fish that swim across the ocean have detectable radionuclides (cesium-137) that almost certainly came from Fukashima*, but I don’t think they have been detected in intertidal animals such as sea stars (along our coast).”

*If the author is going to write about this topic, perhaps learning the proper way to spell Fukushima would be a good place to start. This article was linked to by the UC Santa Cruz website discussing the wasting syndrome, or else it would likely have gone unnoticed.  It is the only update to UCSC’s ‘Articles, Publications, and News Broadcasts‘ section during December, even though several high profile reports have been published (KING 5 News, SF Chronicle).

According to Pearse, the sea star population in the kelp forest at Stanford’s Hopkins Marine Lab in Monterey Bay has been nearly wiped out, and that “it is my understanding that there has been little or no detectable increase in radioactivity on our coast since that disaster.”

A Google search can enhance someone’s ‘understanding’ a great deal — how about ‘Kelp’, ‘Fukushima’, ‘California’.

Here are some highlights for anyone who prefers evidence over someone’s ‘understanding’:

  • Study: Fukushima radiation plume contacted North America at California ‘with greatest exposure in central and southern California’ (Source)
  • California had 2,500 Bq/kg of iodine-131 in seaweed — Over 500% higher than other tests in U.S., Canada (Source)
  • 40,000,000 Bq of iodine-131 in a single bed of kelp off California — Amount most likely larger (Source)
  • Study Author: California iodine-131 probably double or triple what we reported (Source)
  • California Newspaper: Coastal fish possibly affected by radioactivity — “I would assume it’s there” in the plants and animals off California’s coast says researcher (Source)
  • Local TV: Radiation in kelp could create a health concern for California seafood lovers — “The question we all want answered, how dangerous is this to you and me?” (Source)
  • L.A. Daily News Column: Radioactive kelp is California’s “most under-reported story of the spring” — “It’s been somewhat radioactive off-and-on for months” (Source)

Researching the Fukushima contamination in the Pacific Ocean that’s being transported to the North American west coast via the North Pacific Current is an opportunity for additional understanding. For starters try this: [intlink id=”study-shows-fukushima-nuclear-pollution-becoming-more-concentrated-in-pacific-as-it-nears-u-s-west-coast-plume-travels-a-nearly-straight-line-to-america-appears-to-stay-together-with-little-dis” type=”post”]{{empty}}[/intlink] and this: [intlink id=”experts-fukushima-contamination-data-correct-could-be-1000-levels-claimed-govt-tepco-60-billion-becquerels-strontium-cesium-flow-outer-ocean-day” type=”post”]{{empty}}[/intlink]

Published: December 12th, 2013 at 8:59 pm ET


Related Posts

  1. LA Times: Experts suggest bald eagle deaths are related to Fukushima radiation — Idaho officials reporting similar sickness — “It’s hard to have your national bird in your arms, going through seizures” (AUDIO) December 30, 2013
  2. PHOTOS: Sea star began “ripping itself into pieces” — Like a horror movie — AP: Deaths from Alaska to S. California — Biologist: Related to an environmental change? “An early warning that we aren’t picking up on?” — Professor: “None of us had ever seen anything like this before” November 4, 2013
  3. NPR and California Department of Public Health appear on document with nuclear-related U.S. entities ‘working together’ with Tepco to ‘disseminate’ Fukushima-related information — CDHP Yesterday: West Coast will get NO radioactive contamination from Fukushima (PHOTO) January 8, 2014
  4. Reports: Sea stars decimated on West Coast — SoCal ravaged as mystery disease spreads south; Saw hundreds last year, now none… got hit really hard — Mortality event like this never before documented — “Uncharted waters… likes of which we haven’t seen” — Turning to ‘bacterial goop’ (RADIO) April 5, 2014
  5. Seattle TV: “Warning, video of the (melting) sea stars might be disturbing” — Scientists are “so concerned” about rapidly spreading die off on West Coast — Doubled in just a few days — Jellyfish numbers booming November 2, 2013

87 comments to Marine Biologist: All the sea stars along west coast of North America could be wiped out — Some developing ‘bald spots’; “Others look completely healthy except for guts coming out” — ‘Speculation’ it could be related to Fukushima

  • norbu norbu

    Why speculate? Test these things please, then give the results to the world.

  • MaidenHeaven MaidenHeaven

    She shouldn't even opened her mouth until she had documented the actual radiation levels & the elements detected in both the water & the starfish. It may not be as a result of Fukushima but I want it tested to rule it out…& why wouldn't she??? And why does she not have data proving it is or isn't from industrial runoff? It makes her report useless.

    • ftlt

      Maid: Are you talking about the reporter, who wrote the story or our Paula R…. We have no idea what our poor Paula R. said really..

      It is the reporters story after all – one who might have had a new shopping mall opening to cover that day as well..

    • 16Penny 16Penny

      I keep saying, an easy way to test for ionizing radiation would be to put one of the stars on top of some photographic paper and see if they develop spots on the film. Fast and effective way to establish yes or no on the presence of Ionizing radiation. Then it would warrant identifying individual isotopes.

  • ftlt

    Here is an interesting PDF – if some of you want to be bothered reading about Fracking Off-shore in California – It is not from a fracking friendly group.. It is about 30 pages for dummies with pictures too…

    Thought, it might be appropriate on this thread… And the West Coast Sealife threads in general..

    There was a blurb I caught this week that a fracking firm had been busted dumping nearly all its toxic chemicals into the ocean.. I'll try and find it

    • Mack Mack

      More insanity:

      "Scientists suggest stuffing nuclear waste into the hole fracking leaves behind"

      "A presentation made at the annual meeting of the American Geophysical Union argued that nuclear waste could be stored in fracking boreholes which go deep into the Earth. Nuclear waste would be mixed with other heavy materials and injected miles below the surface. Since the nuclear fluid mixture would be heavier than the fluid typically used in fracking, it would move downward."

    • Crash2Parties Crash2Parties

      Fracking fluids are proprietary. As such, they are somehow therefore magically exempt from EPA oversight. Not only could they be pumping anything into fracking wells, as proper corporations whose primary responsibility is to their shareholders, it behooves them to provide a paid disposal service to other industries.

      • PhilipUpNorth PhilipUpNorth

        Gas and oil wells in Michigan start out as "Extraction Wells", then turn into "Enhanced Extraction Wells"
        (Fracking Wells). They all. In the end, become "Injection Wells", dumping whatever the trucks from downstate want to get rid of. Federal Law doesn't permit citizens to sue fracking companies when they pollute aquifers.

        Good thing da geology under da UP doesn't support deep enhanced extraction, eh? 😉

  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    Scientists suggest stuffing nuclear waste into the hole fracking leaves behind
    12/12/ 2013

    • Mack Mack

      sorry Heart – I didn't see you posted this a minute earlier.

    • ManWithThePlan ManWithThePlan

      Are these by any chance the same scientists that still cannot (or are too afraid for their career to) make the plausible link between millions of fish and other wildlife dying in the span of several months and the nasty crap spilling/billowing out of Fukushima?

      Oh, THOSE scientists.

      Yeah, we're screwed – now they're gonna wreck the Earth's crust with radioactive poison.

  • Jebus Jebus

    UCSC research funding tops $130 million for 2012-13

    September 18, 2013

  • OldFool

    In one sense, river pollution of thousands of miles of the Pacific coast could actually be the main factor. Because river run-off into the Pacific from each river along the West Coast of North America could be contributing an enormous amount of radioactive fallout that has been getting rained off the mountains and forests that received the Fukushima fallout via the Jet Stream in 2011. In other words, this rain-induced run-off of radiation into each of the rivers could be far more serious in magnitude than even the Kuroshio current borne radiation coming straight from Japan.

  • Speedy

    In reading through the (source) links, I see in the comments, a few names from now that were fighting the fight 1 1/2 years ago..I give you a hardy handshake….but also makes me wonder where all the others that were engaged, are now….

  • Bones Bones

    Awesome post! Hell yea!

  • name999 name999

    I am crying…the sea stars …aka the "slaps"…damn,,,it turns into slaps with pathological auto correct…sea stars…salps…are beautiful…no more sea stars…that is so hard …shaking my head…

  • Lady M

    I had a (horrible) thought. We've seen two things recently, over and over, along the Pacific coast: 1) Sea animals are CONGREGATING, and 2) After congregating, they are beaching, dissolving or otherwise DYING. Could the situation possibly (horribly) be as follows? Nature has its ways of balancing populations. For example, Atlantic sea stars back in 2010 developed wasting disease when their populations density got too high, and I am thinking that beaching may also be a way for nature to reduce too-dense populations. So is it possible that the reason that sea animals are CONGREGATING is that they are sick/dying from radiation and that animals in that state are hard-wired to congregate in order to increase their chances of being able to MATE — therefore increasing the likelihood of sustaining the species? In this situation we'd have sick sea life species homogeneously congregating (which they are doing) in a last-ditch attempt to mate… and then beaching or otherwise dying because their density becomes too high. Sea stars, salps, sardines, whales, seals — Is it possible that what we are seeing is all these animals' LAST DANCE? Brrrrrr, chilling! Something that would support this hypothesis is any kind of observation that the sea animals, when they CONGREGATE, are trying (successfully or otherwise3) to MATE. Is there any info on that?

    • Ourself Ourself

      I think this is a good observation, though not the only possibility.

    • 16Penny 16Penny

      Hey Lady M, do you have any pictures from the 2010 sea star "wasting" event? All I can find, none of them are of sea stars melting like we are seeing now. They were dead, yes. But all pictures I find they were whole. Some with parasites but none were piles of goo.

    • PhilipUpNorth PhilipUpNorth

      We humans have caused lakes to die, and rivers to die, due to pollution.

      This is the first instance where pollution from human activity (or in TEPCO's case, inactivity) has destroyed an entire Ocean Ecosystem.

      Fukushima released at least the full load of radionuclides from Reactors1-3.

      That was 690PBq of just cesium alone.

      What did you think was going to happen?

      Japan is toast. They are all dead. (They just haven't fallen over yet.)

      West Coasters should make plans to relocate now.

      Hawaii should already have evacuated.

      But at least TEPCO didn't have to pay for an underground Impermeable Wall completely surrounding Ruins1-4, that would have blocked groundwater from becoming contaminated.

      Not having learned their lesson thus far, my guess is that all the contaminated water in the tank farm, decontaminated or not, will eventually be dumped into the Pacific Ocean.

      Fukushima, Japan, and the Pacific Ocean are getting more and more contaminated all the time.

      Will this end with the workers simply evacuating FDNPP?

      • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

        After 3 years that surely seems to be the plan.. 🙁

        Secretly evacuate and wait to mutate, deform while money laundering as much of the citizen's money that you can before you die… 🙁

      • digitalaardvarks digitalaardvarks

        where do you think west coasters should go? the numbers are high all over the country.

        • tbg

          Im on the west coast, and Ive been thinking the same thing. With no accurate account of particulate fallout, all we really have to go by is radnet and netc, and they say shit is sporadically bad everywhere. As the windborn rads move thru, you can watch high levels move in the wind fronts. Some places seem to be consistently higher than other, but everywhere gets it and then lots of places are in close proximity to NPP's (or several). That is a definite drawback for me in this day and age, specially if things really go to shit. I guess im leaning towards far south america or australia. South America I can walk to in a real pinch and in Australia they speak my language. Plus Uruguay just legalized cannabis, most useful plant in the world Im thinking. Maybe I can talk them into making a hemp-gasoline or alcohol-fired reactor, they seem to have some sense.
          But I dont have money to leave, hell I barely have money to stay, I dont even have a geiger counter. I dont have any real concrete bug-out plan, and I cant convince anyone that we should leave, or to even stop eating fish. So what is there to do? And where is there to go when I get that go-go feeling? I dunno. Just more questions I guess.

  • Lady M

    For some types of sea creatures, the beaching I mention above could, alternatively, be inspired by their hard wiring to "follow the (sick) leader." With whales and dolphins, for example, if the leader becomes sick and runs ashore, the rest of the group may follow.

  • Crash2Parties Crash2Parties

    While at this point I'm still favoring a pathogen or naturally caused toxin, that's only because no one seems to be taking a bunch of sea stars and testing them the way you would food to look for radionuclides.

    What do sea stars eat? Filter feeders. What do filter feeders do? Filter out the little bits left of whatever has died & fallen apart but not otherwise become someone's dinner. Like, say, kelp. Or tuna.

  • Jebus Jebus

    Please, make your voice heard.
    Over 150,000 already have…


    I don't care if you think it does no good.

    What have you got to lose?

  • dosdos dosdos

    I'm inclined to think that were are seeing genetic mutations of common organisms and virii that are both more aggressive in reproduction and more aggressive in interactions with other organisms. Nuclear radiation is more than capable of catalyzing such mutations with neutron and emf releases, clipping DNA, RNA, and other genetic structures.

    This is one of the greater worries. Consider the phytoplankton eating salps , probably dead from consuming mutated phytoplankton. The various plankton are the base of the aquatic food chain. They are consumed by a great deal of species from tiny fish up to whales. If these become mutated, then the entire ocean is at risk from the consequences of these mutations. What doesn't get poisoned directly is weakened by the degradation of the food chain.

    More and more species will fall prey to the chain of mutations that the radiation can produce. And some can certainly be deadly to man.

    It is not something to write off. The radiation count doesn't have to be that high to cause havoc. It doesn't have to be in the dangerous zone, or even more intense than normal background levels. The matter is that these are not naturally occurring isotopes, they are products of refined nuclear fission, and their effect is different from the natural forms of radiation. Just because they aren't intense enough to cause immediate harm to man doesn't mean they aren't a risk to the life on this planet.

    • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

      .. 🙂

    • tbg

      Im also getting the feeling that we are truly getting into some uncharted territory beyond humanties knowledge of nuclear phenomenon. I think brand new, never before seen on this planet isotopes could have been created out of fuku. With the huge amounts involved and the ultra high heat, and the probably nuclear detonation. The cladding fire and pool fires and the melted corium absorbing metals and seawater and fuk-hu knows, maybe some glowing fishes on the way down.
      Then in another 10 years some jackass will get a nobel prize for discovering fukushimium, the savior of the planet from the scourge of overpopulation.

  • Tests… may not always say it all.

    As Admin pointed out above, certain radioactive contaminants would not show. Yet they may have done damage.

    The overall point, as I see it, is that what is needed is transparency of data from all kinds of testing and conclusions based on qualified observations. How hard is that?

    Who needs a test to PROVE, at this juncture, that something is really 'messed up' with the ecosystems and that it has accelerated since 311.

    A six year old could piece this puzzle together. 😉

    Fukushima, TRIPLE meltdowns, nonstop and going emissions for almost 3 years with no end in sight.

  • TheBigPicture TheBigPicture


    Animals, then people.

    Nuclear radiation makes you sick.

  • unincredulous unincredulous

    Times Columnist – "[…] The virus affects the animals in different ways."

    What virus? Does the virus have a name? Is there a photo?

    "[…] Others look completely healthy except for their guts coming out in strings. […]"

    I think that a doctor would not describe a person as "healthy, except for guts hanging out." I think generally, a doctor would see the guts hanging out and just not mention the "generally healthy" thing. I think it would be rather rude to do so. "Hello, son, you look really good today, except your guts are hanging out" just doesn't sound right. Again, the emphasis on "nothing to see here — everything is fine." Maybe it's a good thing — a new trend. Maybe Israel will make peace with Iran tomorrow. " Hey, Iran you look completely great today, except your missiles are pointing at me. Let's have lunch. " Anything is possible…

    I guess just anything, that remotely might raise concern about nuclear radiation, must be given the positive "English," as in a game of billiards.

    SCRaaaaattttccchhhhh. Ripped the tablecloth on that one, billybob.

    • nedlifromvermont

      Good post! Facts laces with sarcastic humor … that's sure to force the nuclearists to repent!!!

      I don't know about you, but I'm becoming incredulous!


    • bo bo

      The earth looks completely healthy today, except its guts are hanging out from the pacific ocean.

    • Fargadem Fargadem

      happy to read you enenewers, searching the web about Fuku, each time come upon you !
      @uninc : some seastars can throw out part of their gusts to begin digesting too big prey for their mouth ; not so worrying attitude as if yours hang out ( mine is stainlessteel – no fear for nukes,… specially here in France despite 54 NPP and strong nucleocracy- lol)
      bytheway : wehavegot a new law (april2013) which institutionalyse healthwhistleblowers ! (not still used, because bureaucracy so hard to please …)

      • unincredulous unincredulous

        @fargadem- "some seastars can throw out part of their gusts to begin digesting too big prey for their mouth."

        I do that all the time now. I had to try something new after 9/11/01 when trying to digest the words (lies) coming from US politicians. Especially had a hard time when eating "Freedom Fries." I liked french fries my whole life, and I didn't like them messing with my holy grail.

        My guts were always getting tangled in my bicycle spokes so I had to avoid talk radio.

        54 NPPs. Wow. Yeah though you walk through the valley of the shadow of nukes, you shall fear no evil! You have SS guts!

  • bozzy54

    This summer and over my adult life time (54) fishing northern California from serria mountain to our northern river and local lakes I spent one week fishing at June lake in four days I caught 35 trout and not one I caught was eaten, they had blood in there eyes, gills, lips. What was even stranger was the mutated heads and fins they had flat heads like a bull dog and eye balls not in the right places and missing fins or mutated. I emailed the local fish and wildlife departments with no reply. So I researched all that I could and found post ( regarding the fallout in the higher elevation. Weather related or not I trust what I see, smell, touch and feel and this has changed my views about eating any fish products. Now we have had for some time now elevated mass die off and new reports up and down the west coast. My radioactive meter also show elevated back ground radiation and a fluctuation up to .54 McSv/hr. It just completed a two min. Test @ .34 McSv/hr I checked Radnet and to confirm and I believe I've got my answer.

    • nedlifromvermont

      at .54 McSv/hr … staying at that location for the year would result in an exposure to about 4.5 MilliSieverts per year … which is less than the schoolkids in Japan are forced to deal with (20 milliSieverts or 2 REM) from gamma shine … but it's just under the Chernobyl mandatory evacuation level … and this in the Sierra foothills?

      No wonder they turned off all the monitors … soon we will have to evacuate California into the Chernobyl exclusion zone …

      • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

        And to think everyone out in California and the west coast is clueless! You won't see a story in any newspaper or on any TV or radio concerning Fukushima, Japan and/or the increasing daily Radiation Contamination fallout dangers.. 🙁

      • bozzy54

        After my trip in august 2013 to june lake and researching since 3/11/13, this event sent this rank amuture on a quest because of my love of fishing. Since then I purchased a radiation meter from Soeks 1.0 and converted my smart phone into a radiation detector as well.. I traveled upto fort Bragg and worked my way south hitting any beach I could to check radiation readings. Basically what I measured was normal background radiation with some areas elevated. I also check local fishing hole and piers along the bay area and found the same results. The jet stream modles as well as and Radnet seem to relate to my measurements. There seem to be pockets of higher elevated background noise all over the areas I have traveled. I keep my counters with me all the time now, the higher readings I've measured was driving on the freeways. One day down the 680 south my meters went off the chart?. Made me really think about my surroundings and very aspect influencing these measurements. One thing that came out of this is that I did not relie on Internet and/or news casts. I feel more aware and informed and well stay put and protect myself as best I can. I'll still fish these areas but this time I'll have more reliance upon myself seeing getting trustworthy information is hard to come by. The truth better make me personally safer regardless of the outcomes and gives me a chance to combat the foes.

        • flatsville

          bozzy, Please do post those fish pics to the web eith a link and let us know when you do. If you can provide some annotation, even better. I know someone who can put them to good use.

    • PhilipUpNorth PhilipUpNorth

      Bozzy54: Your mutated fish photos belong on, or other photo dump website, so we can share them on ENEnews and spread the aweful news far and wide. Got a link?

      Sorry abiut your fushing hobby. Suppose you will develop a new hobby, now that fishing is such a bummer.

      • PhilipUpNorth PhilipUpNorth

        "About", not "abiut". Typo…

      • Phil Shiffley Phil Shiffley

        Also RadChick, Christine Consolo has the site called Mutation Watch. She regularly shares mutation photos on her FB site of the same name. She's posted here before but not sure how closely she monitors the heavy traffic of discussion here.

    • bo bo

      Thank you bozzy for this personal account, and also, was able to open that link later about the mass die offs. That is really scary about the fish mutations. So are other fishermen starting to notice, I wonder ?

    • jec jec

      "they had blood in their eyes, gills, lips" sounds just like the herring found off Canada;s west coast. You know, the ones they said might have a 'virus'..not to to worry. But the herring are your discovery/account Bozzy should make a few fish biologist get concerned (one hopes) and start checking mountain lake fish. Cant have that virus spread, can we? (sarcasm)

  • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

    bozzy54, they have fish shows on the radio on the weekends out here. I hoped you called in and told the public what you saw and did. It would be important to let the other fisherman know the radiation contamination is in the water and don't eat the fish.. 🙁

    • bozzy54

      There was 8 of us and my son they were disappointed and said that in all there years fishing the area that they never seen anything like this and that the fishing really "sucked". At this time I mentioned Fukushima and the fall out back in 2011. trying to educate them from what I had learned. Well back at the cabin the beer started to flow then it was joked about. I'll see what I can do about pictures of our trip.

  • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

    This is way up there in ski country… 🙁,_California

    • bozzy54

      In all fairness, I also fished spicer, union, alpine, ice house, loon, girly, delta (bass baby), George, twin lakes, feather river, American river, and the Sac and just about every watering hole I could get my pole wet and caught good fish. I'm not totally freaked out yet but with all these reports around the world and the west coast it stopped me in my tracks to investigate. I check all my fish and canned tuna as well as my food I purchase with my meter and I' m gaining weight.

  • tsfw tsfw

    Even though they were saying it was unlikely a result of radiation and Fukushima, I was surprised to see those two words in the article. It feels like they're slowly but surely gearing us up for it.

  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    This would be the third year of migrations..of the animals that do so in the Pacific..
    I think there is a lot less to eat out in the ocean.. healthy species are trying to get away from those areas..(animals still have instinct..humans do not).. and as the smaller species weaken ..the predators.. are being able to catch up to them in mass.
    The contamination goes up the food chain.

    • unincredulous unincredulous

      Salmon swimming up the rivers, someone should be checking the grizzly bears up north for radiation. Three years old! My, little Fukushima is getting to be a big girl, now!

  • Sol Man

    "It has been my understanding that there has been little or no detectable increase in radioactivity on our coast since that disaster."
    Alright it may be a little increase in the measured radioactivity (but, what wasn't measured and when?) though these are the most toxic substances in the history of the world.

    ftlt also has an interesting comment at 9:31.

    Is there no limit to the evils?

  • Nick

    Anyone check out the real estate market on the West Coast lately?

    Is it time for me to buy my dream home on the beach?

    I can't wait to feel the Strontium 90 burn when I go surfing.

    Guess I'll miss out on the starfish. Just where did they go anyway?

  • Lady M

    @Unincredulous: Heeheeheehee!!

    Re Fargadem's post: I think that's one of the great things about this site — people on it know really interesting things, and when they share them it is as if little beams of light have been shined onto this whole mess. Who knows, one day we may end up with a beacon of some sort.

    @16Penny: Sorry, no pix!

  • gottagetoffthegrid

    Email contact info for USC Santa Cruz can be looked up here:

  • Tumrgrwer Tumrgrwer

    With all of this on going mess we are still concidering new Nuclear Power Plants on the west coast. Still spending our dollars on nuclear reserach. I hope they build these where sink holes don't go.

  • Paulie777

    Not everything is related to Fukushima, let me drop the scoop on whats happening. In the millions of years that kelp evolved, they evolved a toxin they could release as a defense against predators in the warmer waters. As kelp moved into colder waters the toxin wasn't needed as they had less predators and could survive fine without it so it evolved without it. Now, as man has overfished it disrupted the balance of things so kelp in these waters have brought out this toxin defense again and it is this toxin that is killing the starfish. The main thing to know here is that the natural status quo is out of balance which is inherently a bad thing but as biologists know, when it affects the starfish, things go majorly down hill with the other life around as starfish anchor a lot of the order. So it is the one two punch of overfishing that man did and the warmer waters now of climate change. Note the starfish wasted away during the warmer el nino years of before. This time its major. Fukushima is a whole different story of disaster. Worry about the cesium, plutonium, strontium that is being released which is a death sentence for life. Humans have majorly screwed up this time.

    • 16Penny 16Penny

      "Now, as man has overfished it disrupted the balance of things so kelp in these waters have brought out this toxin defense again and it is this toxin that is killing the starfish"

      If the ocean is overfished, and the toxin is a defense mechanism against predators, why is the kelp giving off these toxins now?

      I am curious which toxin melts calcium carbonate.

  • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

    Paulie77, That might make sense except for this information. Millions of years to evolve/change/adapt throws a monkey wrench directly into the above concept too.

  • Paulie777

    Yes, the temperatures are colder, much colder than lifes beginnings, thats the disturbing fact here. This defense was from millions of years ago when the earth was a much warmer place across the board. This toxin was phased out because it was no longer needed. Now, it appears they regenerated it in colder waters-much colder than lifes infancy on this planet.Its a last resort for them which is quite disconcerting. Scientists will figure this out, but you heard it here first. I hope that clarifies.

    • SadieDog

      Your theories are based solely on assumptions, not fact. Can you provide some info or facts to back up your ideas? You presume to know the temperature of the earth and it's oceans millions of years ago and the migration of kelp over this time. And…if overfishing has resulted in less "predators" for the kelp,nwouldnt it produce less of this mystery toxin, not more? Also kelp is a common name for many species of sea vegetables.

      • Paulie777

        You are thinking correctly. Overfishing has disrupted the order, its complicated why kelp is doing this, but yes, expect huge alge blooms shortly, because of the balance. Its not a good thing.

  • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

    That would be one giant amount of toxin thrown out to kill everything the length of distance affected and this one (toxin) should have been confirmed many years ago during previous star fish die offs…was it confirmed?

  • Paulie777

    There are not many people that know kelp had a natural defense against predators pre-oligocene, which wasn't needed after that. Now they have drudged it up to protect themselves present day as a last resort I believe. I am only referring to the starfish, you can count on two hands the reasons why all the other marine life is dying.

  • Paulie777

    Google "ecological impact of starfish" They are one of the few keystone species for the diversity of marine life. They are one of the bottom cards in a delicate house of cards, when they tumble so does everything else. The present natural state is out of whack and everything including kelp, is adjusting, but say goodbye to much marine life and diversity in the oceans. Kelp is just trying to survive like everything else, but it shows you how screwed up things are. We tend to blame it on other species, like the otter, but its man doing the damage.

  • Paulie777

    Here you go.

    Its major. When they go, we go. But thats natural. The cesium 137, strontium 90, plutonium coming from fukushima will destroy us too. The pacific ocean is like the crown jewel of this planet and the radiation from fukushima is pouring into it. The pacific ocean is vast but not vast enough for the radioactive materials falling into it. This is a case of the bigger they are the harder they fall, so get ready for a real hard fall.

  • I think it is time to move south! I moved to Chile and I can help you.

  • unincredulous unincredulous

    Before / after video of starfish healthy / dead / dying / melted –