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Chilling footage shows thousands of dead fish covering the sand at a popular Chilean beach after they washed up in unexplained circumstances.
In the clip, a woman and her young son are watching the catastrophe as they walk along Coliumo Beach on Saturday morning (February 19).
The peninsula of Coliumo in Biobio is a famous beauty spot with rugged coastlines and its waters are normally teeming with sardines and anchovies.
In stark contrast, the eerie video shows countless silvery fish lying dead on the rocks – and no one is totally sure why.
More images of the piles of dead fish covering the sand at Coliumo Beach were widely shared on social media and people argued over what they thought the cause might be.
The phenomenon was also reported to the authorities by local fishermen and tourists visiting the coast that morning.
The National Fisheries and Aquaculture Service (Sernapesca) said it is sending a team of experts to the area to carry out an investigation and determine the exact cause of death.
Sernapesca said experts will visit the scene, carry out tests, and establish the exact cause of the mass fish deaths.
A similar incident took place along the coast of the Biobio region just last year and Sernapesca carried out an investigation, concluding that the fish were killed by a low amount of oxygen in the water.
Many local residents said that something similar has occurred again because the fish swim close to the shore in search of oxygen and nutrients.
Low oxygen in sea water is often associated with the overgrowth of certain species of algae that can create "dead zones" in the ocean where nothing can survive.
This comes after people in Mexico were shocked when countless dead fish washed up on the shores.
A palaeobotanist researcher even drew comparisons between the Great Dying 251 million years ago – that killed off 90% of our planet's species – and damage being done today.
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