Saturday, 4 June 2011

Grunion Run

It happens every year. Off the coast of California (USA) and Baja California (Mexico).

Between March and June. Dependent on a full or new moon and a high tide. Dates for these runs can be predicted a year in advance.           

Grunion, little silvery fish, are famous for their spawning behavior.

They have sex on the beach instead of in the ocean.

Females bury themselves in the sand tail first (photo above) and lay their eggs. Then males wrap themselves around the females and fertilize.

Then scurry scurry scurry back into the water.

It is quite a sight.

Last night was a good run if you were walking Del Mar Beach between 10:30 and 12:30.

Many people were watching this phenomenon, jumping in the water and one family of four was grabbing up the squirmy fish to fill a Home Depot bucket.

April and May is closed season. No taking of grunion is allowed.

As of June, you may use your bare hands to catch but it is advised to ‘catch and release’ to keep the population healthy.

Another run is predicted tonight between 11:10 pm and 1:10 am.

It is a sight worth seeing.

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