Australian rescuers free stranded baby whale

2014-07-10 08:23
Sea World marine rescue workers try to rescue a humpback whale beached at Palm Beach on Queensland's Gold Coast. (Patrick Hamilton, AFP)

Sea World marine rescue workers try to rescue a humpback whale beached at Palm Beach on Queensland's Gold Coast. (Patrick Hamilton, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Gold Coast - Australian rescuers freed a beached baby whale on Thursday almost two days after it became stranded on a popular beach, as a large crowd of onlookers cheered.

The humpback whale, believed to be two years old, was successfully fitted with a specially designed harness and a boat was used to tow it into deeper waters.

It was the fifth attempt at removing the whale since it washed up on Palm Beach in Queensland State late on Tuesday.

In previous attempts, the rope linked to the harness snapped or the whale got stuck on a sandbar slightly further offshore.

"We were working against the conditions, time was running out on us", Tacha Mulligan, the marine animal supervisor at Queensland's Sea World marine park, told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

"It was the perfect time to go when we were able to release it. We are cautiously optimistic it will be okay from here on in."

Rescuers had erected marquees to keep the whale cool during the day, while staff from Sea World and Queensland's department of environment and heritage protection cared for it at night.

Mulligan said the whale would be exhausted after being out of the sea for many hours.

"It's been through quite an ordeal", she said, adding that the animal was now in deep water and rescuers would monitor its progress through the day.

Whale beaching are relatively common in Australia, but scientists do not know why they happen.

Humpbacks are currently on their annual southern migration from Antarctica to warmer waters in Queensland State to give birth and mate.
Read more on:    australia  |  marine life  |  conservation
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.