Rare whales die beached in South Florida

Mar 30, 2006

Three rare, deep-dwelling whales that became beached Wednesday on Florida's South Hutchinson Island reportedly have been euthanized.

Workers spent more than an hour trying to keep the melon-headed whales still in the crashing surf on the barrier island, east of Stuart, Fla., the Palm Beach (Fla.) Post reported Thursday.

The animals were euthanized after scientists decided they were too sick to be saved. The three animals were thin and obviously malnourished, the newspaper said.

Dr. Greg Bossart, director of marine mammal research and conservation at Florida's Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institution, said the three whales most likely were part of the same pod as a dead melon-headed whale that washed ashore Wednesday at Vero Beach.

Bossart, a veterinarian and pathologist says scientists have no idea why the beachings occur.

Although strandings have been reported for centuries, Bossart told the Palm Beach Post he fears environmental degradation could be making the events more common.

"And the more we see these rare species coming ashore, the more I think it points to that," he said.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: PanSTARRS K1, the comet that keeps going

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Hot flashes? Thank evolution

Jul 29, 2013

A study of mortality and fertility patterns among seven species of wild apes and monkeys and their relatives, compared with similar data from hunter-gatherer humans, shows that menopause sets humans apart from other primates.

Gulls feasting on whales in Argentine waters

Jul 01, 2013

It's a weird, lopsided fight if ever there was one: seagulls divebombing to attack and feed on the fat of 50-ton whales and their babies. And the birds are winning.

Judge: Navy can train near rare Atlantic whales

Sep 10, 2012

(AP)—The Navy can build a $100 million offshore range for submarine warfare training, despite environmentalists' fears that war games would threaten endangered right whales, a federal judge ruled.

Gannet study reveals perils of high-speed diving

Mar 09, 2012

Gannets may be among the fastest and most agile seabird hunters around, but they risk dying of fatal neck and head injuries from accidental collisions in the water when diving for fish at breakneck speeds, ...

New Zealand counts wildlife cost from oil spill

Oct 16, 2011

In a wildlife rescue centre on New Zealand's Bay of Plenty, volunteers grimly bag the oil-soaked bodies of dead birds, victims of the country's biggest sea pollution disaster.

Recommended for you

US-India to collaborate on Mars exploration

6 hours ago

The United States and India, fresh from sending their own respective spacecraft into Mars' orbit earlier this month, on Tuesday agreed to cooperate on future exploration of the Red Planet.

Swift mission observes mega flares from a mini star

7 hours ago

On April 23, NASA's Swift satellite detected the strongest, hottest, and longest-lasting sequence of stellar flares ever seen from a nearby red dwarf star. The initial blast from this record-setting series ...

Sandblasting winds shift Mars' landscape

11 hours ago

High winds are a near-daily force on the surface of Mars, carving out a landscape of shifting dunes and posing a challenge to exploration, scientists said Tuesday.

PanSTARRS K1, the comet that keeps going

14 hours ago

Thank you K1 PanSTARRS for hanging in there! Some comets crumble and fade away. Others linger a few months and move on. But after looping across the night sky for more than a year, this one is nowhere near ...

User comments : 0