It’s that time again. The Honduran media is reporting that the annual fish rain in Yoro, Honduras took place on Saturday 16 June. Both La Prensa and El Heraldo have small pieces on the event which apparently took place a few kilometres from Yoro around 5pm.
According to La Prensa, a violent two hour long storm brought the rain, leaving fish of many sizes in the yards of Yoro residents. Local reporter Adonay Doaze stated that children and adults collected the fish and on Sunday, many households had a free fish lunch.
The Yoro falls allegedly occur each year in May or June and have become a major cultural and religious event in this part of Honduras. Perhaps the best general overview was done by the New York Times in 2017.
The phenomenon deserves a longer piece on this blog, but its interesting to note that the Web, Twitter and Facebook images clearly show locals collecting a variety of fish of different sizes and even a crab in one photo.
#TRACICION O MILAGRO
Una vez mas el Municipio de Yoro es Bendecido ha caído una vez más la lluvia de peces los pobladores de la comunidad de Centro Poblado son los testigos oculares quienes a esta hora de la mañana ya se encuentran con sus canastos pepenando peces. pic.twitter.com/ZyBJ2zSRSr
— El tocoeñohn (@ElTocoenohn) June 17, 2018
More importantly, some shots show areas of flooded land beside a road, and villagers walking along collecting fish. The La Prensa video above also shows locals catching the fish from a flooded area. Along with the lack of witnesses claiming to have seen the fish fall, this leads me to suspect it’s more likely the event was the result of a river quickly flooding an area and then receding, leaving the fish stranded. Roadways are particularly prone to significant water flows during heavy rainfall.
Here are some videos of earlier Yoro falls. The 2016 & 2014 videos seems to show the same swampy area beside a road as this year’s event.
I’m going to investigate the 2018 fall further, so stay tuned for further updates from downtown Yoro.
UPDATE: I was interested to try and find out how long the Yoro fish story had been circulating. Some of the general news summaries suggested around a century but with no real documentation. I then came across this interesting “Believe It or Not” item from the Nebraska State Journal in April 1930. The Yoro fish falls were known in the west over 80 years ago!