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An aquarium affected by SCP-5261, formerly occupied by krill.

Special Containment Procedures: Foundation webcrawler J/M-CON is to monitor news outlets and social media platforms for posts regarding strange occurrences within establishments housing marine life. Witnesses to known SCP-5261 occurrences are to be amnesticized under cover story 58-B ("Burglary") and are to be reimbursed for their losses. SCP-5261 events discovered in-progress are to have their SCP-5261-1 instances captured and relocated to Marine Site-82. These instances are to be released into a contained section of the Atlantic Ocean to nullify their anomalous properties, and are to then be recaptured and monitored for further anomalous properties before permanent relocation or use in testing.

Following the events of 03/22/2021, feeding and care of SCP-5261-1 is to be heavily monitored and done remotely if possible. Individuals outside of SCP-5261's research team wishing to access specimens of SCP-5261-1 require prior approval and accompaniment for the duration.

Description: SCP-5261 refers to an anomalous phenomenon affecting businesses housing large amounts of marine life, most prominently aquariums and exotic pet stores. No direct link between affected businesses has been found, however the majority of them were found to have previously failed inspections of their quality care or to have obtained their wildlife through fraudulent means.

SCP-5261 is believed to result in the development of a shared sapience among aquatic life housed by the business, similar to a hive-mind. Within 24 to 32 hours of this intelligence developing, affected organisms (referred to as SCP-5261-1) will work in tandem to escape the business, utilizing tactics often associated with prison escapes in popular media. It is unknown how SCP-5261-1 successfully employ most of these tactics, as their efficacy seems to be often unhindered by a lack of prehensile limbs. Following this, SCP-5261-1 will locate and disperse within the nearest open body of saltwater. Anomalous effects will cease once SCP-5261-1 have successfully dispersed or have been captured and recontained.

The frequency and scale of SCP-5261 events appears to be completely random, with notable events including;

  • A small tank of starfish found with its contents plastered across the glass, completely blocking the interior. Further inspection discovered several snails within the tank attempting to unscrew a vent cover using their shells as makeshift screwdrivers.
  • A tank of crabs was found to contain makeshift replicas of the tank's occupants by filling molted shells with colored pebbles, sand, and artificial plants. The current whereabouts of the crabs are unknown, although several hundred dollars were also found missing from the store's cash register.
  • A missing pet store transport van discovered on an abandoned stretch of beach. The corpse of the driver was found in the back of the vehicle covered in small puncture wounds. Autopsy results found traces of puffer fish poison present within the cadaver's circulatory system. All transport tanks within the van were found to have been shattered, although fragmentation analysis suggests they were broken from the inside.
  • The entirety of the New England Aquarium being found completely emptied of aquatic life and its entire security detail missing. Upon further inspection it was found that each of the tanks was connected by a network of tunnels leading to the open ocean, centered on the Giant Ocean Tank1. Examination of the aquarium's security system found that each of the surveillance cameras had been obscured with dried squid ink. The location of the security detail is still unknown, although pieces of dead coral carved into accurate depictions of firearms were found at the bottom of several tanks.

Addendum.5261.1: On 3/22/2021, an alarm sounded signalling that a minor breach of SCP-5261-1's containment tanks had been detected. On-site security investigated but returned claiming there was already an agent on the scene. Shortly afterwards, a large surge of aquatic life was detected being released from an on-site disposal hatch. Security forces discovered the supposed agent nearby, who moved in an erratic manner while fleeing, knocking over furniture and bumping into walls. After being detained, the agent began vomiting a large amount of seawater and organic matter, along with two large octopods. Security attempted to detain the octopods, but they were able to escape into a nearby bathroom before their whereabouts were lost.

An autopsy of the agent found that the individual matched no Foundation employee on record, possessing false identification made of dried kelp and ink. It is believed that the octopods were piloting the body by lightly squeezing sections of the individual's brain to trigger movement, with one controlling the arms and legs and one compressing the lungs to provide the brain air. Following this event, more thorough screening of employees entering the site has been implemented.

rating: +57+x
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