Two whales washed up on the East Hampton shore. A 59-foot long female finback whale was found dead in the Napeague area. The 5-foot long young male sperm whale was alive when encountered by rescuers in the Amagansett area.
The baby sperm whale found on the beach in Long Island weighed just 150-pounds, had skin lesions, and was in poor health, Gothamist notes. Riverside Foundation Rescue Program Coordinator Kim Durham stated the young whale showed signs of illness during an interview with Patch. The rescue coordinator also had this to say about the two whales found in the East Hampton area:
“It is rare to have a pygmy sperm whale beached, whether it was dead or alive. It was likely a coincidence that the two whales turned up within a mile of each other, noting that the current carried the female finback whale onto the beach. The same could be said for the pygmy, if it was weakened, it’s going to go where the current is going to take it.”
A decision to euthanize the pygmy sperm whale was made at least in part because there was nowhere in the region the mammal could be rehabilitated. The Riverside Foundation has just one tank, and it is currently being occupied by harbor porpoise. The rescue group does not put more than one species in a single tank and does not put a new mammal in the tank with one that is already in the process of rehabilitation.
A necropsy will be performed on the baby sperm whale later this week. Local law enforcement officers are in the process of removing the finback whale off the beach. Last month, a 60-foot long finback whale washed up in nearby Breezy Point. The whale later died of kidney failure.