At California’s Second Biggest Lake, the Latest Fallout of Drought Is Gruesome

At California’s second biggest freshwater lake, the latest fallout of drought is gruesome: dead fish in nearby stream beds that have run dry.

Some of the foot-long, silvery Clear Lake hitch have been decapitated by raccoons and other varmints, which have had easy pickings of the beached minnow.

The grim sightings by Lake County and tribal crews surveying the lake have prompted a rescue effort over the past week to save hitch, a threatened species found only in this region. Many are still stranded in what little water remains in the channels amid larger questions about the fate of the fish and the state of drought-diminished Clear Lake.