52 Pilot Whales Found Dead in East Java



Laila Afifa

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  • TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Fifty-two short-finned pilot whales were found dead on Friday, February 19, at the Blega sub-district of Bangkalan in the East Java Province. The Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Ministry believed that the dozens of whales were stranded before eventually dying. 

    “We suspect that there was one whale in the group that was injured or ill which led the rest of the colony to follow and protect it but eventually found themselves stranded. That led to the 52 dead whales,” said Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Ministry spokesperson Wahyu Muryadi on February 19.

    News about the mass stranding was recorded in a video that spread through messaging-app services. It shows dozens of whales were lying at the coast during low tide. 

    Members of the Denpasar Coastal and Marine Resources Management Office had been mobilized to the location this morning along with veterinarians, local apparatus, the East Java Maritime and Fisheries agency, and volunteers. 

    Fortunately, Wahyu said that three of the short-finned pilot whales are believed to still be alive and the team at the field is attempting to keep the surviving whales alive during high tide. 

    Read: Australia Plans Disposal of Hundreds of Stranded Whale Carcasses