A rare event occurred yesterday (14th August) at Pantai Pasir Bogak, Pangkor Island. Fish, or more specifically, anchovies (ikan bilis) started flooding the beaches. Needless to say, plenty of locals were excited and amazed by the spectacle.
The event apparently occurred around 7pm. It made for quite a sight as fish were jumping out of the water onto sand and docks. Although some were concerned it may be a precursor for something, older locals have claimed that this phenomenon is natural, albeit rare.
Locals were surprised as fishes swarmed the beach, leaping out of the waters. According to one islander, it was the first time he had seen the fish stranding themselves since returning to Pangkor Island 10 years ago. “In the past two weeks, there were strong winds and waves, but no abnormalities,” they stated. “(So), I didn’t expect hundreds of thousands of anchovies (to be) stranded on the beach (yesterday) evening.”
They weren’t the only ones surprised. The curious phenomenon had people arriving at the beach late at night to witness the scene for themselves. Plenty brought containers to collect the fish, claiming they were still edible. According to the islander, aside from anchovies, a few herrings (ikan tamban) had also landed on the shore.
Many were left wondering what had happened to cause such a phenomenon. The fish were found stranded some ways into the beach, without the help of the wind and waves. Some suspected it was a sign a tsunami was coming, however, older islanders claimed they were wrong. Although there is no verified reason for the phenomenon, some opined that perhaps there were too many anchovies in the shallows or the anchovies got frightened and jumped ashore.
There haven’t been any more fishes stranding themselves, much to the regret of some islanders. However, those who did manage to grab a share have been very grateful for the natural bounty. Well, aside from the gift of nature, there has also been an increase of ikan bilis recipes being shared online, so feel free to take advantage of it!
Check out the video here: