OROVILLE (CBS13) — Fish raining down from the sky?
Stanford Avenue Elementary School officials in Oroville think that’s exactly what happened at their school, earlier this week after students reported finding hundreds of fish scattered across the playground Tuesday morning.
“It looked as if they fell from the sky,” said Corey Simpson, a resource specialist at Stanford Avenue Elementary School.
Hundreds of fish sprinkled the playground at the elementary school, and officials say they are baffled.
“There were about half a dozen of them on the water fountain,” said Simpson.
The fish were also scattered around the play structure and the roof of one of the school buildings and a storage unit.
“It was kind of like an Easter egg hunt,” added Simpson.
He says the swimmers rallied over a hundred students to the playground, who were intrigued at how the fish ended up at their school.
CBS13 wanted to know how the fish landed at Stanford Avenue Elementary?
“Our three big options were vandalism, the Department of Water Resources, or fish raining down from the sky,” said Simpson.
“We are probably as baffled as anyone else at how fish would arrive from the sky on top of the school building,” said Harry Morse, an official with the State Department of Fish and Wildlife.
According to DFW, aerial fish stocking is common practice when trucks can’t transport fish by ground.
But Morse says “we very rarely transport them in this area by airplane, all of our salmon are transported by tanker trucks.”
Morse says his agency is not responsible for the incident because DFW only raises trout and salmon. The fish at Stanford Avenue Elementary were a different species.
“They look like either shiners and may be some immature carp or bluegill,” said Morse.
DFW adds the elementary school isn’t near any large body of water where an agency can make a fish drop. DFW’s game warden reached out to local helicopter companies and fish farms on Friday, but came up dry on any leads.
It’s a fishy situation leaving state officials scratching their heads, asking “how in the heck could this occur?”
DFW says it has no explanation for what happened and is no longer pursuing the bizarre incident. As for the fish, they were taken home by several teachers to be used as compost.