• 10 Feb - 16 Feb, 2024
  • Mag The Weekly
  • Mag Files

Residents of a remote Australian community were perplexed when hundreds of fish "rained from the sky" alongside heavy rain. On Facebook and Twitter, viral photos show the streets of the outback town of Lajamanu layered with fish that had fallen from the sky. According to an ABC News report, Lajamanu local and Central Desert councillor Andrew Johnson Japanangka said, "We've seen a big storm heading up to my community, and we thought it was just rain." However, it wasn't just rainwater that poured down; with it came some spangled perch, Australia's most common freshwater fish. According to ABC News, Japanangka stated that some of the fish were "the size of two fingers" and alive when they fell. "Some are still floating around in a puddle of water in the community. According to the article, children are picking them up and putting them in a bottle or jar. While this is an unusual weather event, it is not unprecedented. The same thing happened in Lajamanu in 2010, 2004, and even 1974. Strong updrafts, such as tornadoes, can suck water and fish from rivers and dump them hundreds of kilometres away, according to weather experts. According to the report, Jeff Johnson, a Queensland Museum ichthyologist (a scientist who studies fish) expressed surprise that such relatively large fish as spangled perch had rained down.