Biologists to euthanize beached whale

Jan 01, 2008

Marine biologists monitoring a sperm whale stranded at the mouth of Florida's Tampa Bay say euthanizing it is the most humane option.

The 25- to 30-foot whale has been floating around the Pinellas coastline since at least Sunday, when a commercial fisherman spotted it, the St. Petersburg (Fla.) Times reported Tuesday.

The whale being in water less than 9 feet deep is often considered a sign of distress, biologists said. The group monitoring the whale decided Monday to euthanize the mammal after its breathing became labored.

Mote Marine Laboratory spokeswoman Nadine Slimak said it would be more humane to euthanize the animal than to let it die on its own. The whale beached itself Sunday but made it back to water Monday. Biologists then tried to move it to deeper water but it wouldn't swim away, the newspaper reported.

The whale wasn't exhibiting any visible signs of trauma, such as bleeding, officials said.

"It's just floating there," Slimak said. "It's not doing any of its normal actions."

Copyright 2008 by United Press International

Explore further: Researchers discover new mechanism of DNA repair

Related Stories

Dolphins use extra energy to communicate in noisy waters

Apr 23, 2015

Dolphins that raise their voices to be heard in noisy environments expend extra energy in doing so, according to new research that for the first time measures the biological costs to marine mammals of trying ...

NOAA to explore depths of Caribbean Sea

Apr 09, 2015

Beginning April 10, scientists aboard NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer will begin a series of 20 dives to investigate previously unseen depths of the Caribbean Sea and Atlantic Ocean – and the public can follow ...

Recommended for you

Researchers discover new mechanism of DNA repair

Jul 03, 2015

The DNA molecule is chemically unstable giving rise to DNA lesions of different nature. That is why DNA damage detection, signaling and repair, collectively known as the DNA damage response, are needed.

The math of shark skin

Jul 03, 2015

"Sharks are almost perfectly evolved animals. We can learn a lot from studying them," says Emory mathematician Alessandro Veneziani.

Cuban, US scientists bond over big sharks

Jul 03, 2015

Somewhere in the North Atlantic right now, a longfin mako shark—a cousin of the storied great white—is cruising around, oblivious to the yellow satellite tag on its dorsal fin.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.