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Rare whales wash ashore in Long Island: Lactating mother and her calf are dead

Mother and calf rare whales wash ashore dead in Long Island just a day apart.
Mother and calf rare whales wash ashore dead in Long Island just a day apart.
Wikimedia Commons

Two rare whales, called True’s beaked whales, were found dead washed up on the beach of Long Island within in one day of each other. Marine biologists believe it was a mother whale and its male calf, according to Patch on Jan. 10.

The female adult whale was lactating indicating she had a baby she was feeding. The male baby calf was discovered on Bridgehampton Beach.

The lactating female whale was discovered on Sunday on a Southampton Village beach. The mother whale was believed to have been “thrashing about” on Flying Point Beach before she washed ashore dead further west on the Southampton beach.

Necropsies will be done on both the mother and son whales. A necropsy for animals is like an autopsy for humans. Hopefully this will shed some light on how these two rare species of whales me their demise.

All that is known at this time is both the whales were in poor shape, with the whale calf under nourished. They remains of the whales were taken to the Long Island Aquarium and Exhibition Center for the procedures.

According to the Riverhead Foundation True’s Bleak whales:

"True's beaked whales have an unusual distribution in that it is found on both sides of the North Atlantic, Australia and South Africa. Based on available strandings and sightings, it is the only ziphiid with a true anti-tropical distribution. North Atlantic records of this species are mainly from warm-temperate waters. That is why its stranding here is rare."

The female whale that washed ashore weighed about a ton and she was 15-feet long. The calf weighed about 400-pounds and was about eight-feet in length.

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