Roughly 200 whales stranded on Tasmania’s coast have made news for the second time this week. Half of them have been reported as dead while many more suffer.
Another mass stranding happened in Australia earlier this week. On that occasion, more than a dozen sperm whales, mostly young, were found dead on a different beach. The location where the whales were stranded on Tasmania’s coast was confirmed as King Island.
Ongoing rescue efforts by official personnel. According to The Guardian, The Tasmanian department of natural resources and environment confirmed that a pod of “230 pilot whales stranded on Ocean Beach. Some animals were also stranded on a sand flat inside Macquarie Harbour.”
Changes in the water temperature could be one of the many reasons why the animals are showing up on shores. As highly intelligent animals, experts find it strange that the whales would show up in this manner. There were thought to be reported plans for seismic testing in that area, near the same location that these whales feed.
The National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority (Nopsema) recently confirmed to Guardian Australia that “there have been no seismic surveys undertaken in commonwealth waters off the northern or western coasts of Tasmania in the past week”.
What we know:
Tom Mountney, of Petuna aquaculture, gave a statement about the stranding. Mountney was present as a rescuer during the 2020 mass stranding in the same location.
“I’m seeing about 200 whales here on the beach. I’d say about half are alive. We are kicking off our rescue effort – getting them onto special blankets to right them. The biggest are over two to three tonnes. We are triaging the smaller ones.”
Temporary road closures:
Roads leading to Ocean Beach and Macquarie Heads have been closed. The Tasmanian police are present and helping with security and safety.