Indonesians hack into beached whales in mass stranding

Oct 02, 2012
Villagers look at dying pilot whales stranded on the shore of Savu island in East Nusa Tenggara province on October 2, 2012. Forty-four pilot whales beached on the island, 41 have died and fishermen, navy and police officers are still struggling to keep three surviving whales alive.

Locals on a remote island in eastern Indonesia on Tuesday cut up several dead pilot whales for food after a mass stranding that killed at least 41 of the mammals, an official said.

A total of 44 beached themselves late Monday on the island of Savu in East Nusa Tenggara province, where there is a culture of whale hunting for consumption.

"Locals have hacked into around 11 whales so far and will probably use the flesh for meat," Savu fishery office chief Dominggus Widu Hau told AFP.

"When local found them before midnight, they were all still alive. But it was already late and there were not enough people to help push them back in."

More than a dozen fishermen, navy and police officers were still struggling Tuesday afternoon to keep the three surviving whales alive.

"We managed to push them back into the water, but they returned to the beach," Hau said.

Jakarta Animal Aid Network identified the mammals, which lay stranded around 150 metres (492 feet) from the coastline, as pilot whales. Those beached were between two and five metres long, Hau said.

Pilot whales commonly become stranded en masse since they stick together in large groups, especially if one is sick, according to .

Explore further: Study shows troubling rise in use of animals in experiments

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Ninety whales stranded on New Zealand beach

Jan 23, 2012

A pod of 90 pilot whales have beached themselves at the top of New Zealand's South island, in the same area where seven whales died in a mass stranding earlier this month, according to officials.

82 whales stranded on New Zealand coast

Feb 04, 2011

Ten pilot whales died when about 82 of the mammals beached at the top of New Zealand's South Island on Friday, officials said, warning that the others could not be refloated immediately.

Recommended for you

Cats put sight over smell in finding food

2 hours ago

Cats may prefer to use their eyes rather than follow their nose when it comes to finding the location of food, according to new research by leading animal behaviourists.

Feds spot third baby orca born recently to imperiled pods

3 hours ago

(AP)—U.S. scientists following endangered killer whales from a research vessel have spotted a baby orca off the coast of Washington state, the third birth documented this winter but still leaving the population ...

Bumblebees make false memories too

5 hours ago

It's well known that our human memory can fail us. People can be forgetful, and they can sometimes also "remember" things incorrectly, with devastating consequences in the classroom, courtroom, and other ...

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.