A pod of pilot whales can number between 20 to 100 animals, according to New Zealand's government.
Many volunteers gathered on the shoreline broke down in tears on hearing the latest strandings appeared to be over.
The pod was the second large group to strand itself in recent days at Golden Bay, at the northwest tip of the South Island, in one of the worst mass strandings in New Zealand. By Sunday morning most had managed to refloat themselves and at high tide volunteer workers were able to get the remaining animals back into the water where boats were used to guide them towards the other survivors.
By Monday, Farewell Spit was clear of stranded whales, though officials were still monitoring a pod swimming fairly close to shore, the Department of Conservation said.
In the aftermath of rescue efforts, some successful, the beach was littered with hundreds of ticking time bombs in the form of whale carcasses, as reported by Reuters.
"This morning, we'll be getting people down there basically poking holes in them, letting the gas out of them". It has a long protruding coastline and gently sloping beaches that make it hard for whales to swim away once they get close.
The DOC is also considering building a fence around them to stop them from washing out to sea and into nearby beaches in Nelson and on the Kapiti coast, Radio New Zealand reports.
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Authorities have set about moving hundreds of whale carcases into the sand dunes in a part of Farewell Spit not open to the public where they buried them with a digger.
"It has been decided it is more suitable to take the dead whales out of the area that is open for public walking access", New Zealand's department of conservation said on its website.
The agency is now trying to figure out what to do with the carcasses of the dead whales.
Beached whales are not uncommon on Golden Bay.
"There's no strong evidence that strandings are linked to natural disaster events".
Just last week, NASA announced a new investigation into the role of solar storms in mass stranding, seeing as they're known to mess with Earth's magnetic field, and cetaceans use magnetic-field sensing to navigate.
Volunteers at Farewell Spit worked to keep the stranded whales wet.