Dead humpback whale washed ashore in Cape Town

(Gregg Oelofse, City of Cape Town)
(Gregg Oelofse, City of Cape Town)

Cape Town – Officials will on Wednesday begin the “giant” task of removing a dead humpback whale that washed ashore at Strand beach in Cape Town.

The carcass of the four-metre whale came ashore overnight and lodged on a reef, the city’s environmental corporate governance director Gregg Oelofse said.

“The dead animal offshore is nothing unusual. We get quite a lot of that during the year.”

As a precaution, Strand beach was closed for bathing as the carcass was emitting fluids and could attract sharks.

A group of bystanders had already gathered to take a look at the carcass. Oelofse said their whale stranding team was “pretty proficient” and hoped to get the carcass off the beach on Wednesday.

The removal depended on the tides and weather conditions.

“We have asked that the public give us space. We will try and put chains and straps around it and lift it onto a flatbed truck. It is big machinery and if those chains snap, it can be very dangerous.”

The carcass would be taken to a landfill site for disposal. Environmental affairs department officials had been on site early in the morning to take samples from the animal.

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