Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

10/21/2013 (3 years ago)

Catholic Online (

Legend says oarfish predict major quakes, were seen in Japan a year before 2011 quake.

A rash of recent oarfish sightings in California could portend a disaster for the Pacific Rim state as traditional folklore and anecdotal evidence suggests.

Do oarfish at the surface portend disaster? Their presence isn't normal.

Do oarfish at the surface portend disaster? Their presence isn't normal.


By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (

10/21/2013 (3 years ago)

Published in Technology

Keywords: Oarfish, earthquake, prediction, Japan, folklore, California

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Oarfish are denizens of the deep and are rarely seen at the surface, or on the beach. However, within the past few weeks, two oarfish have washed up on California shores.

In Japan, there is a traditional correlation between oarfish and earthquakes that dates back for centuries. Traditional Japanese folklore says that oarfish beach themselves as a warning to the people before an earthquake. The normally elusive fish, which can be up to five meters in length, are said to be messengers from the palace of the Sea God.

Although scientists have not properly studied the matter, there does appear to be an anecdotal correlation between oarfish sightings and major earthquakes. Most recently, in the year before the massive March 11, 2011 earthquake in Fukushima Prefecture that took some 18,000 lives, Japanese fishermen reported a rash of oarfish sightings. These reports were made as early as March, 2010, following a major 8.8 quake in Chile.

A possible scientific explanation may be that deep-sea fish, such as oarfish, are more sensitive to seismic shifts and stress, and somehow respond to the tectonic pressure that builds before an earthquake by coming to the surface.

Does this mean the clock is ticking for Californians? It is still too early to tell. Two sightings, no matter how close together or rare, do not make for a verifiable trend that can serve as a reliable warning. Even if the beachings do correlate with a quake, it is still impossible to predict just when and where the quake will strike. That a major quake will someday occur in California is a foregone conclusion.

This 18 foot long oarfish washed ashore on Oct. 13.

This 18 foot long oarfish washed ashore on Oct. 13.

To be clear, the only evidence then is traditional Japanese folklore, which in a scientific sense isn't evidence at all. However, not all folklore is nonsense either.

Last week, it was revealed that the many Yeti sightings in the Himalayas could be based on the sightings of an uncatalogued bear species wandering the area. The DNA evidence, if it is to be believed, suggests  that people in the region are not necessarily hallucinating or hoaxing when they report they are seeing something.

The sensitivity of certain animals to seismic shifts has also been reported since ancient times, however scientists are still yet to verify a link between bizarre animal behavior and earthquakes. Much of the evidence is thought to be the result of confirmation bias and not actual evidence of a pending quake.

Still, it will be interesting to watch the beaches of the California coast and wait to see if any more messengers of the deep arrive on our shores. If they do, and a major earthquake follows within the next year, then scientists will have some deep diving of their own to do.

A birth foretold: click here to learn more!


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'

Copyright 2016 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for SEPTEMBER 2016
Centrality of the Human Person: That each may contribute to the common good and to the building of a society that places the human person at the center.
Evangelization: Mission to Evangelize: That by participating in the Sacraments and meditating on Scripture, Christians may become more aware of their mission to evangelize.


More Technology

Whoa! Why the universe is more crowded than we thought Watch

Image of The universe is packed with galaxies, many we cannot see.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Scientists believe the universe may have 10 times the number of galaxies than previously thought. New research and new mathematical models suggests there's a lot more stuff out there, but we cannot see it. LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - Researchers from a team ... continue reading

Brain implant helps paralyzed man feel and move hand Watch

Image of New tech is offering more options for the medical community to treat patients.


Nathan Copeland, who has been paralyzed since he was a teen, was able to feel sensation in his fingers after a successful trial with robotics and a brain implant. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Technology has been excelling in leaps and bounds, so when Copeland, ... continue reading

White House reveals the real dangers of A.I. - Are YOU safe? Watch

Image of Robots will take over low-income jobs first (PCWorld).


Robots help make life easier. It's a fact most science fiction writers picked up on decades ago and many see today. With self-driving cars, improved medical techniques and even A.I. girlfriends, the world is preparing to rely more heavily on A.I. and robots while ... continue reading

Robot revolution inches closer - A.I. has now learned 'rational reasoning' skills, can teach itself Watch

Image of A.I. can now think and reason and teach itself.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Robots are getting smarter, and are becoming capable of doing things we can't easily do, or do in a short space of time. It is becoming apparent what will happen next as the world's movers and shakers prepare for a world where robots provide the labor, and in some ... continue reading

Man spends $100/month for FAKE girlfriend - Has technology gone too far? Watch

Image of More men are turning to cyber girlfriends in alarming trend.


QUICK, turn to me, pity me, alone and wretched as I am! - Psalms 25:16 LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - God did not create us to be alone, yet thousands of people around the world are forced to turn toward artificial intelligence for relationships and meaningful ... continue reading

Toyota unveils robot for 'emotional companionship' - robots could become commonplace in homes within the next decade Watch

Image of This tiny robot is intended to serve as an emotional substitute for human companionship.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

A Japanese firm is releasing a tiny robot intended to provide emotional companionship for people.  The tiny robot is the latest in a growing industry where robots provide companionship to lonely people. Robots remain exotic, but are expected to become commonplace ... continue reading

Self driving trucks to begin replacing truck drivers in 2017 Watch

Image of Uber and Otto will debut the first self-driving truck on American roads in 2017.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Robots are already starting to replace security guards and delivery drivers. Now truck drivers will be replaced starting in 2017. A tech company called Otto has developed a self-driving truck that's ready for the road. LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - Starting in ... continue reading

Get ready to give up your car keys, driverless lanes are coming! But beware... Watch

Image of Soon you will no longer be allowed to drive, the day is coming.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Get ready to give up your keys, human drivers may face driving bans in as little as five years as self-driving cars come online. Planners are evaluating a stretch of the I-5 in Washington for a possible human driver ban. If practical, it will spread. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading

Imagine a leisurely future without work! But beware there's a HIDDEN DARK SIDE... Watch

Image of What does the future look like?

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

In the future, robots and artificial intelligence will become so capable that they will take over every imaginable job from humans. What will happen when there is no more work for people to do? How will humans adapt to this workless future? And is there a dark side to ... continue reading

Attention console gamers! PS4 Pro specs and release date Watch

Image of The PS4 Pro will be released just in time for Christmas.


Sony released the PS4 Pro specs, release date and more. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The system is set to hit stores November 10 and will cost $399 - but is it worth it?Let's start with the specs: If you don't already have one, it's time to invest in a 4K TV or ... continue reading

All Technology News


Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Sirach 35:12-14, 16-18
12 for the Lord is a judge who is utterly impartial.13 He ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 34:2-3, 17-18, 19, 23
2 I will praise Yahweh from my heart; let the humble hear and ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 18:9-14
9 He spoke the following parable to some people who prided themselves on ... Read More

Reading 2, Second Timothy 4:6-8, 16-18
6 As for me, my life is already being poured away as a libation, and the ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for October 23rd, 2016 Image

St. John of Capistrano
October 23: St. John was born at Capistrano, Italy in 1385, ... Read More