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Mass stranding leaves nearly 100 whales dead on the remote Chatham Islands

Incidents like this are not uncommon on the Chatham Islands

Remote Chatham Islands100 whales dead on the remote Chatham Islands | OyeYeah News
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Mass stranding has left nearly 100 whales dead on the remote Chatham Islands in the Pacific Ocean.

New Zealand’s Department of Conservation (DOC) first reported at 12.30 pm on Sunday that a total of 97 pilot whales and three dolphins died in the stranding.

Reportedly, when the officials arrived at the scene at Waitangi West Beach on Chatham Island nearly three hours later, just over a quarter of the stranded whales were still alive, but very weak to survive.

 dead whales on islands

DOC Biodiversity Ranger, Jemma Welch, said: “Only 26 of the whales were still alive at this point, the majority of them appeared very weak, and were euthanized due to the rough sea conditions and almost certainty of there being great white sharks in the water which are brought in by a stranding like this.”

Later, a ceremony was held to honour the spirit of the dead whales, which are left to decompose naturally.

Mass stranding or cetacean stranding, commonly known as beaching, is a phenomenon in which whales and dolphins strand themselves on land, usually on a beach.

The stranded whales on the beach often die due to dehydration, collapsing under their own weight, or drowning when high tide covers the blowhole.

the authorSaman Siddiqui
Saman Siddiqui, A freelance journalist with a Master’s Degree in Mass Communication and MS in Peace and Conflict Studies. Associated with the media industry since 2006. Experience in various capacities including Program Host, Researcher, News Producer, Documentary Making, Voice Over, Content Writing Copy Editing, and Blogging, and currently associated with OyeYeah since 2018, working as an Editor.