Mystery deepens over sea creature massacre after thousands of crabs and lobsters wash up on Yorkshire beaches

The mystery behind the thousands of sea creatures that have continued to pile up after washing up on beaches across North Yorkshire remains unexplained, according to experts.

Dead crabs and twitching lobsters and all manner of unexplained crustaceans have been lying on the beach between Marske and Saltburn which has left residents concerned.

The dramatic scenes have left experts puzzled as to why so much marine life has suddenly made its way to the Yorkshire coast this month.

The rotting and pulsing piles of creatures have also been washed up in Seaton Carew and further North at Seaham, Teesside Live reports.

Marske resident Sharon Bell, who walks the stretch of beach near her home every day, said the numbers of creatures have steadily increased and added she’d ‘never seen anything like this’.

Environmental organisations have now joined forces to investigate further and have amde the inquiry a ‘top priority’ according to the Environment Agency.

So far, experts have ruled out sewage, seismic activity or underwater cables as the cause of thousands of crabs and lobsters washing up dead on North Sea beaches.

The Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas) is completing a series of highly complex tests of the samples of water, crab and sediment.

They are hoping to identify whether any contaminants or signs of disease can be identified.

Hannah Westoby, senior marine monitoring officer for the Environment Agency, said: “We understand how distressing the sight of dead and dying marine life is on our beaches, so this investigation is a top priority for Environment Agency and Cefas laboratories.

“The Environment Agency is investigating whether a pollution incident could have contributed to the deaths of the crustaceans and Cefas is investigating for signs of disease.

“The tests being carried out by our labs are extremely complex and have to be undertaken in steps.

“We’re analysing samples of water, sediment and crab for traces of hundreds of potential contaminants, so it is taking time to work through all of the possibilities.

“We’re continuing to collect further samples while we await the results.

“Our investigations have managed to rule out the likelihood of a number of possible causes, including sewage, seismic activity and underwater cables.

“Results for our water samples have come back as normal for those locations.

“There is always the possibility that this was a natural event, so we are keeping an open mind.”