An oarfish
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Oceanographer debunks oarfish earthquake myth

23 October 2013 Last updated at 12:21 BST

The carcass of an elusive oarfish has been found washed up on a beach in California for the second time in a week.

In a modern take on spoken tales, social media has lit up with talk of an ancient Japanese myth linking oarfish sightings to an impending earthquake.

But how much truth is behind the myth?

HJ Walker, from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in California, told BBC Radio 5 live's Up All Night: "If there is a enormous giant earthquake beneath the sea, other fish would be affected - not just one or two oarfish."