New York, NY – The beached whale that washed ashore and died in the Breezy Point neighborhood of Queens, New York will be buried in the sand dunes, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
The whale, which passed away Thursday morning, cannot be easily moved from the scene of its death because National Park equipment that would typically be used was destroyed by Hurricane Sandy.
NOAA spokeswoman Allison McHale revealed that the whale’s carcass would be transported on Friday to the sand dunes of the beach where the whale died. A high water line at the site of burial will help to prevent erosion, said McHale.
The Army Corps of Engineers has agreed to loan the type of equipment required to transport the whale carcass. The National Park Service and New York City Sanitation will join forces to remove the creature. McHale detailed more of the plans for dealing with the dead whale:
“The necropsy will then be conducted either tomorrow or Saturday, depending on when the whale is moved.”
The whale was first discovered on Wednesday morning, with McHale describing how the creature was “emaciated and in poor physical condition.” The NOAA concluded that nothing could be done to save the stranded creature. At the time the whale was discovered, Nick Ecock of Point Breeze Volunteer Fire Department told CNN:
“We thought it was dead when we arrived, but then it started moving.”
Burying a beached whale is not usual procedure, as McHale revealed:
“In the past they (have) been buried on the beach, disposed of in a landfill, or towed out to sea.”
Here’s a New York Post report on the plight of the beached whale: