Thousands of dead fish, including starfish, washed up on North Norfolk beaches

A dead fish pictured on East Beach. Picture: Alison Toon.

A dead fish pictured on East Beach. Picture: Alison Toon. - Credit: Alison Toon.

North Norfolk residents have been issued a new warning after thousands of dead starfish, crabs, and other fish have washed up along the district's beaches.

The dead animals are thought to have been carried ashore over the weekend by Storm Emma.

This has raised concerns with beach goers and dog walkers, after two dogs died from eating washed up and contaminated sea life in 2017.

Testing by the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas) confirmed last month that the marine life consumed by the dogs was contaminated with Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning (PSP).

The contaminated fish previously recorded were also washed up by a storm.

The Eastern Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority (IFCA) has reiterated their advice to visitors to the beach in the wake of Storm Emma.

The Eastern IFCA's advice is to keep dogs under close control, on leads or muzzled, and to avoid handling the starfish.

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Recreational anglers are also advised to dispose of any Dab caught and not to consume the fish.

Julian Gregory, CEO of Eastern IFCA, said: 'We don't yet know whether the latest mass stranding is related to PSP toxins.

'It's more likely to be as a result of the weather. 'However, because we have an ongoing investigation into the discrepancies between PSP toxin levels found in north Norfolk, we have taken the opportunity to do more sampling to investigate further.'

Marine life washed ashore has been widely reported from Cromer to Sheringham.

At high tide today, remnants of crab and lobster claws, as well as a number of dead fish and star fish, were found on Cromer's East Beach.