Beachgoers first noticed the clams Wednesday morning. Many have come by to photograph and gawk at the tiny mollusks.
"This is actually the first time I've run into this and it's amazing," said Marco Tellechea of Santa Ana, an amateur photographer. "I'm enjoying this, I really am. It's awesome."
Matthew Bracken, a professor of ecology and evolutionary biology at the University of California Irvine, said the tiny sea creatures are bean clams. They live under the sand on the coast and sometimes pop up to the surface.
"These things come in in big numbers periodically," Bracken said. "You find an event like this maybe once or twice a decade."
The experts says the best thing to do is just let the clams go back with the tide.
They don't recommend trying to eat them. They say just enjoy the view.