Rarest Fish on Earth Rode Out 10-Foot Waves When Ridgecrest Earthquake Hit

Devils Hole pupfish are seen in an undated photo provided by the United States Geological Survey.

Devils Hole pupfish are seen in an undated photo provided by the United States Geological Survey.

The rarest fish on Earth swam for their lives when a powerful earthquake rattled Ridgecrest earlier this month.

The magnitude 7.1 quake that split open the floor of the Mojave Desert on July 5 shook up life far beyond its epicenter. In Death Valley National Park — some 70 miles away from where the earthquake was centered — 10-foot waves erupted inside Devils Hole, a 10-foot-wide and 25-foot-long pool that is the sole home to the endangered Devils Hole pupfish.

About 136 pupfish live on a shallow underwater shelf in the geothermal pool, a drastic increase over their small population of 35 in 2013.

Earthquakes as far away as Alaska and Papua New Guinea have agitated the water in Devils Hole, but the 7.1 Ridgecrest quake rocked it more than any other in recent memory. When the second, larger quake struck, video shows the inch-long iridescent-blue pupfish diving deeper into the 500-foot Devils Hole for safety.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.

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