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Wednesday, October 5, 2022

They rescue 32 of 230 pilot whales stranded in Australia

HOBERT, Australia ( Associated Press) – Wildlife experts on Thursday rescued 32 of 234 pilot whales stranded off the far west coast of the Australian island of Tasmania.

The Tasmanian Department of Natural Resources and Environment said half of the pilot whales discovered in Macquarie Harbor were thought to be alive earlier on Wednesday.

But only 35 survived a night of rough surf, said Brendan Clark, director of the Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife Service.

“Of the 35 that were alive this morning, 32 were able to rescue, rescue and release the animals … 32 and that’s a good result,” Clark told reporters in the nearby town of Strahan on Thursday afternoon.

“We still have three survivors at the north end of Ocean Beach, but due to access restrictions, mainly due to the tide, we have not been able to safely access those three animals today. But they will be our priority in the morning.” Clark said.

The whales appeared two years after the largest such event in Australian history, which took place in the same area.

About 470 long-finned pilot whales, or pilot whales, were found trapped on sandbars off the west coast of Tasmania. After a week of effort, 111 of those whales were rescued, but the rest died.

The entrance to that port is a shallow and dangerous channel known as Hell’s Gate.

Chris Carlion, a biologist with the Marine Conservation Program, said the dead cetaceans would be tested for toxins that could explain the disaster.

“These large-scale events are usually the result of a casual approach to the coast, and this is due to a whole range of reasons,” Carlion said.

On Monday, 14 whales were found on King Island, which is part of the state of Tasmania, in the Bass Strait between the Australian mainland and Tasmania’s northern coast.

Griffith University marine scientist Olaf Menecke said it is unusual for sperm whales to be trapped. He said rising temperatures could alter ocean currents and displace whales’ traditional food sources.

World Nation News Desk
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