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Toyama - A rarely seen deep-sea fish regarded as something of a mystery has been giving marine experts food for thought recently after showing up in large numbers along the Sea of Japan coast. The ryugu no tsukai (slender oarfish) - or "Messenger from the Sea God's Palace" - has a long, slender reddish fin and has been compared with a snake. It is akin to an oarfish, which has a dorsal fin running the length of its body and has been called a sea serpent. There have been reports of the fish being caught in stationary nets or drifting ashore since the start of winter. Some people theorize the phenomenon may foretell a big quake, but others aren't so sure. One fish was found on the beach in Kurobe, Toyama Prefecture, in December followed by one in offshore nets in Takaoka and another off Nyuzen, both in the same prefecture, earlier this year. Four others drifted ashore at Chirihama beach in Ishikawa Prefecture in the first two months of this year, while 10 were discovered in...