Experts have announced a major probe into thousands of starfish deaths within weeks on the shores of Britain, the Daily Mail reports.
Mass starfish strandings are not uncommon to Britain, but the scale of the one that has blanketed the beaches of Kent and Sussex, England, with thousands of tiny corpses has raised eyebrows and prompted officials to delve deeper into the mystery, the Daily Mail reports.
"We've been investigating what might have killed them and we've ruled out the weather," the Environment Agency’s Lucy Harding said. "They were in a good condition and were all washed ashore at the same time, which means we can rule out disease."
Experts believe the deaths likely are attributable to overfishing for mussels, the story says.
The Environment Agency said dredgers used for scraping the seabed for mussels most likely killed the starfish, either by dislodging them into the currents, where they were swept to shore and died, or by churning up mud and sand that covered and suffocated the creatures.