Posted by: The ocean update | August 11, 2015

Baby whale rescued from Monterey Harbor (California, USA)

A whale surfaces beside a sailboat in the Monterey Harbor as officials and others try to direct it out by pounding on the side of boats and making noise on Tuesday night. (David Royal - Monterey Herald)

A whale surfaces beside a sailboat in the Monterey Harbor as officials and others try to direct it out by pounding on the side of boats and making noise on Tuesday night. (David Royal – Monterey Herald)

August 11th, 2015 (Ana Ceballos). Monterey – It took authorities about three hours Tuesday night to free a 35-foot baby minke whale (Ed Sibylline : if it’s really a Minke whale, it’s not a baby or the length is wrong) that had got itself stuck underneath a dock at the Breakwater Marina.

Officials remain puzzled as to what led the whale to swim to the harbor.

“No one has heard of this happening before,” said Monterey firefighter Greg Greenlee.

When Monterey firefighters and Coast Guard crew members arrived at the harbor about 6:15 p.m., they noticed the whale was alone and surrounded by bait fish. They noticed the water was bloody, and that the whale was trapped in a small area surrounded by boats.

The whale repeatedly hit its face against sharp rocks as it tried to swim away from the dock area.

It suffered a few skin lacerations and scrapes, but no major injuries, said Greenlee, who was with the whale through the calamity. He said the whale was calm and quiet through most of the ordeal.

“It didn’t make any noise,” he said.

Authorities noticed no other whales were with the trapped whale. Most likely, authorities said, the whale swam to the harbor from the Marine Sanctuary.

About 9:15 p.m., the baby whale was freed.

Members of the Coast Guard wrapped a fire hose — tied to a few ropes on a boat — around the whale’s head and towed it away. For a couple of minutes, the whale was disoriented, but eventually it swam back to the bay and away from the harbor.

Numerous residents witnessed the rescue and lauded the work of firefighters and lifeguards.

About 30 people stood at the dock taking photographs and video of the rescue, and were heartened to see the whale being released back into the wild.

Source

Advertisements

Categories

%d bloggers like this: