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Behold The Anchovies: Tiny Fish Swarm Calif. Coast

As a pizza topping you either love or hate them, but if you were off the coast of La Jolla, California this week — you likely couldn't escape them.
Posted at 2:04 PM, Jul 09, 2014

As a pizza topping, you probably either love them, or you hate them. (Via Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego)

“... and I mean no anchovies. You put anchovies on this thing and you’re in big trouble.” (Via New Line Cinema / Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)

But if you were off the coast of La Jolla, California, early this week — you likely couldn’t escape them. (Via Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego)

Millions upon millions of anchovies — no that’s not an oil spill — swarmed the California coast Monday — the most scientists had seen in the area in around 30 years. (Via Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego

The tiny, finger-sized California anchovies were spotted by researchers from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. (Via Scripps Institution of Oceanography atUCSan Diego / David Checkley)

But, why they’re so close to shore, scientists aren’t so sure.

See, these kinds of anchovies are known to gather in schools but normally stick to cooler waters than the 75-degree shores of the San Diego Coast. (Via Google)

Which has Oceanographer Philip Hastings of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography a bit confused. (Via KGTV)

“Seems more likely that warmer water would force them off shore. So it’s really kind of a mystery.” (Via KGTV)  

The swarm, which was reportedly about 15-feet-deep and as wide as a football field, had apparently dissipated by Tuesday, but scientists did manage to reel in a few samples.

According to San Diego’s KSWB, anchovies are now primarily harvested for use as bait and in feed for other fish.

Oh, and of course for pizza, that is, if you can stomach it. (Via Flickr / Mecandes)