Hundreds of Stranded New Zealand Whales Swim Free
In one of New Zealand’s largest mass whale beachings, over 240 pilot whales were saved by the coming tide.
Since Thursday night, hundreds of the oceanic mammals were washing up at Golden Bay near the northwest tip of the South Island.
While many were lost despite dozens of volunteers offering assistance, conservationists are relieved that the most recent beached pod were able to free themselves.
The shallow muddy waters of the bay are notorious for confusing whales’ sonar, trapping them on the shores when the tide recedes.
“This is the third worst stranding that we’ve recorded in our history so it’s a very large one. Logistically, it’s a massive undertaking,” said Auckland University marine biologist Rochelle Constantine.
According to Reuters, pilot whales are not listed as an endangered species, but little is known about their actual population numbers.
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Published at Mon, 13 Feb 2017 18:56:32 +0000