At least 145 pilot whales have died in a mass stranding on a remote part of a small New Zealand island, authorities said Monday. Half of the whales were already dead and due to the condition of the remaining whales and the remote, difficult to access location, the decision was made to euthanise the remainder.
Experts said that factors like sickness, navigational error, geographical features, a rapidly falling tide, being chased by a predator, or extreme weather may be causes of whales and dolphins strand. “Sadly, the likelihood of being able to successfully re-float the remaining whales was extremely low,” said Ren Leppens, the Department of Conservation´s operations manager on Stewart Island. “The remote location, lack of nearby personnel and the whales´ deteriorating condition meant the most humane thing to do was to euthanise. “However, it´s always a heart-breaking decision to make.”
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17 November, 2019