Thursday, February 4, 2016

Sperm Whale Stranded On Hunstanton Beach

Whale on beach in Hunstanton

Coastguard and sealife experts are helping a 14m sperm whale that is alive and stranded on the beach at Hunstanton in Norfolk.

Councillor Kate Dunbar says people are pouring water on the mammal to try to make it comfortable, but the high tide is not expected until about 2pm.
"They've used a digger and dug a hole in the sand, the water has been welling in it and people have been back and forth with buckets of water to pour over the whale to make it more comfortable. It's a very sad sight," Ms Dunbar told Sky.
"The tide is about 40ft away perhaps. I think it's on the turn, on its way back... I think the high tide is about two-ish this afternoon... It's probably going to be too shallow for it to swim away safely."

Whale on beach Hunstanton
"They're erecting posts and tape to keep people at a safe distance," she added.
The mammal was spotted around 7.30am and the beach has been closed to the public.
Sealife centre manager Nigel Croasdale called the beaching "heartbreaking" and said he was not expecting a happy outcome.
A number of whales - thought to be from the same pod - have washed up on the UK's east coast in recent weeks, including one at Hunstanton.
Three carcasses were also hauled off of Skegness beach last week to be taken to landfill in Sheffield.
A fifth sperm whale also washed up in nearby Wainfleet.
dead whales on beach Skegness
Twenty-nine whales have now been stranded across Europe in the last two weeks, according to the British Divers Marine Life Rescue (BDMLR)
"We had two in Germany last night, one in France on Tuesday night," said Stephen Marsh, operations manager for BDMLR.
"It's a live stranding but it's unlikely to survive. The tide may well lift it but we don't think it would survive another stranding if it came back in.
"There's nothing we can do, it's likely to be between 25-30 tonnes. We can't lift it, we can't roll it, the vets can't put it out of its misery.
"The body will be breaking down and releasing toxins, causing organ failure.
"It's a very sad case but we will have to let nature take its course."
Experts say migrating whales can get lost and end up in shallow water, making it hard for them to use their echolocation
Wildlife groups have also blamed noise from ships and oil platforms for interfering with their navigation.