Posted by: The ocean update | October 14, 2015

Dead whale washes up on Kent beach (UK)

Experts believe the 36ft carcass to be that of a minke whale. Photograph: Gareth Fuller/PA

Experts believe the 36ft carcass to be that of a minke whale. Photograph: Gareth Fuller/PA

October 14th, 2015. Experts believe 36ft carcass found at Foreness Point is a minke whale

A dead whale has been found washed up on a beach in Kent.

The cetacean, believed to be a 36ft-long (11 metre) minke whale, was discovered at Foreness Point, near Cliftonville, on Wednesday morning.

Experts from the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) plan to take samples from the dead creature, which has a police cordon around it.

“The animal has been floating off the Kent coast for a couple of days and shows signs of being hit by a ship,” said a spokesperson for the Natural History Museum, in London.

It is understood that it will be up to Kent county council to dispose of the carcass, once samples have been taken for testing by ZSL veterinarians.

Julia Cable, of the East Sussex-based British Divers Marine Life Rescue, said: “It looks like an 11-metre long adult minke whale, but it is difficult to say with certainty without seeing the underside of it.”

Minke whales have an estimated lifespan of up to 50 years, and are found from the tropics to the near-freezing waters of the northern hemisphere.

Considered to be generally solitary mammals, minke whales can swim at up to 13mph. Their diet includes a variety of fish, including herring and whiting, as well as plankton.

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