Heartbreaking: More than 140 Pilot Whales Died in New Zealand After Mass Stranding (Devastating Pictures)

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As it was reported, more than 140 pilot whales died after beaching themselves in southern New Zealand. Here’s what Nexter.org learnt about it.

Heartbreaking tragedy

As many as 145 whales have died after being found stranded on a remote beach in New Zealand, conservation officials said Monday.

On Saturday night the Department of Conservation [DoC] was informed of a mass whale stranding in Mason Bay on Stewart Island.

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Source: New Zealand Department of Conservation

A hiker camping in the remote location told authorities of the tragedy, with the number of whales equating to two pods.

The stranding was the largest in New Zealand since 250 pilot whales died last year in one of the worst such incidents in the country’s history.

“It’s deeply saddening,” said Mr. Leppens, the department’s operations manager for the island, who added that the whales, which might have been stranded as early as Friday, had “started to get covered in sand” by the time they were found. Poor meant that experts could not be flown in to assess the situation, so euthanizing them was the only option, he said.

The reason for whales strand is that they make navigational mistakes while chasing prey, escaping predators or trying to protect sick members of the group, but more than one factor could contribute, the Department of Conservation said.

whales-new-zealand-died-photo

But the exact circumstances of the stranding remained a mystery.

“The sooner technology can race forward and give us a better idea of why this happens, the better,” he said.


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Heartbreaking: More than 140 Pilot Whales Died in New Zealand After Mass Stranding (Devastating Pictures)
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Heartbreaking: More than 140 Pilot Whales Died in New Zealand After Mass Stranding (Devastating Pictures)
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More than 140 pilot whales died after beaching themselves in southern New Zealand. Here's what Nexter.org learnt about it.
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