Melon-Headed Whale Dies After Beaching Self in Trinidad
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Melon-headed whale dies: After beaching itself several times in Trinidad, a rare melon-headed whale died.
A melon-headed whale stranded on the Caribbean island of Trinidad died after it beached itself, officials said.
Melon-headed whales, also known as many-toothed blackfish or electra dolphin, are rarely seen by people, as they prefer to dive in deep tropical waters and feed mostly on squids.
On Thursday, a 7-foot specimen was spotted on Manzanilla beach late on Thursday, but died a day later, reported The Associated Press.
Forestry officials told the news agency they tried to send the whale back into the water, but it kept returning back to beach itself. A necropsy for the animal is now planned.
Game warden Pretam Khemraj told the Trinidad Express that he and coworkers waded out in rough seas to take the whale back out. They also poured water on the whale to moisten its skin.
“We tried to return the whale to sea, but it kept swimming back to shore,” he said.
Game warden Jack Kisto told the paper that the whale’s instincts kept it from staying out at sea.
“These whales travel in groups and if they get separated from the group, they tend to head to shore. Or when they are sick and feel like they might be about to die, they also head to shore,” he said.
The whale’s carcass was taken to University of the West Indies School of Veterinary Medicine at the Mt. Hope hospital.
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