Another 200 beached whales were found off the coast of the Australian island of Tasmania on Wednesday (local time), writes The Guardian. Some 270 whales were found on Monday, making it the largest group of beached whales ever in Tasmania.
Rescue is difficult
The second group of whales probably arrived at the coast of Tasmania around the same time as the first group. They were found in a harbor about 7 to 10 kilometers south of the first group of whales. All animals in the second group appear to have died.
In total there are now some 470 whales stranded off the coast of Tasmania. This makes it the largest group of beached whales the island has ever seen. The old record dates back to 1935 when some 294 whales were stranded northwest of Tasmania.
Rescue workers, including 40 scientists, 20 police officers and local fishermen, are trying to get the whales back into the deep water. On Tuesday 25 animals were brought back into the deep water. However, two of them swam back to the stranded group.
The animals are known to follow a leader and gather around injured whales or whales that have gotten into trouble.
It may be pilot whales, a whale that can reach a length of 7 meters and weigh 3,000 kilos. Their size makes it physically difficult to get the fish back into deeper water. Some whales are too big to move. The animals are also in a remote place and the weather is turbulent, which makes the rescue difficult.
On Wednesday the rescue workers will continue with the relief efforts.