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Rare 7-foot-long sunfish washes ashore in Washington state

The warm-water sunfish rarely appears in the Northwest, but a seven-foot-long one washed ashore in Washington state.

The mola sunfish, which weighed roughly 300 pounds, was dead when it washed onto Waikiki Beach at Cape Disappointment State Park, near the Columbia River, on Aug. 28.

Rachel Morris, an interpretive assistant at the state park, told The Daily Astorian that the rangers don't know why the sunfish washed onto the beach.

Sunfish, the world's largest bony fish, can weigh as much as 5,000 pounds and grow to be 14 feet long from fin to tip. "You don't understand how big it is from pictures alone," Morris said.

The fate of the sunfish carcass remains unclear — Morris told the paper that the Seaside Aquarium "wasn't interested when the rangers called." --Meghan DeMaria