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Belief Linking Deep-Sea Creatures to Calamities Debunked by Researchers

The researchers debunked the belief linking the appearance of deep-sea creatures in shallow waters to natural calamities including earthquakes and tsunami.

Over the past few years, the sightings of deep-sea creatures in shallow waters were linked to natural disasters.  The appearance of oarfish and slender ribbon fish along with the coastal areas allegedly indicates an impending calamity, according to Japanese beliefs.

The Japanese folklore claims that oarfish is a prophet of doom indicating an impending disaster because of its ability to discern irregularities happing in the sea bed. Due to this, many people start to conclude that sighting of deep-sea fish is related to earthquakes.

Deep-Sea Creatures

Recently, a team of researchers from Tokai University and the University of Shizuoka described the long-held belief in Japan about deep-sea fish as superstition. The study made the conclusion after comparing cases with earthquake records for around 90 years.

The team explained that the Japanese folklore came from a mermaid legend in “Shokoku Rijin Dan,” a collection of strange tales, which was released in the 18th century. The group also studied the reports regarding the sightings published by aquariums across Japan.

“We thought that if we can understand the connection, it would be useful for disaster prevention,” Yoshiaki Orihara said.

Deep-Sea Creatures

The study shows that out of 336 cases only a July 16, 2007 quake that jolted Niigata Prefecture has found positive.

“It was disappointing to find no correlation, but we also want to investigate any connection between mass beachings of dolphins and whales with earthquakes in the future,” Orihara said.

Deep-Sea Creatures

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