Two more pilot whales found on Vic coast

Two more pilot whales found on Vic coast

The hard decision was made to euthanize the remaining whales to put an end to their suffering.

Other stranding incidents were reported in New Zealand on Saturday and Sunday, however they're not related to the pilot whale tragedy on Rakiura/Stewart Island.

"We'll have some people that can carry out euthanasia", said Mr Turner, who said he had never seen a beaching of this scale in 32 years with the department. Two whales later died there.

In the far north of New Zealand, eight pygmy killer whales were transported by truck to the east coast from the west where sea conditions were too rough to refloat them.

Short-finned (Globicephala macrorhynchus) and long-finned pilot whales look nearly identical when seen in the wild, but the two species differ in fin length, tooth count and skull shape.

Helicopter footage released by the DoC showed the pristine beach littered with whale corpses, many of them recently born calves.

This is the life of an island, however the reason to why dolphins and whales beach themselves is still not clear, but many factors may cause this to happen, in cases of extremely bad weather, or when they are being chased by predators.

The whales are on a beach only accessible by foot and the public are being advised to stay away from the area.

The whale carcasses are unlikely to be removed by authorities and could be left on the beach to be dragged out by the tide.

He said the remaining whales were swimming about 400 meters (437 yards) from the shoreline on Tuesday afternoon and would continue to be monitored until they swam into deeper water, their natural habitat.

Ian Parks from the Victorian Fisheries Authority said that while the carcasses were a shark attractant, "there are sharks in that area anyway".

When conservation workers arrived, they found that 75 of the animals were already dead and they made a decision to euthanize the others due to their poor condition and remote location.



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