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Dead Whale Measuring 58 Feet Long Washes Up on Long Island Beach

By    |   Tuesday, 14 Oct 2014 11:56 AM

A dead whale measuring a whopping 58 feet long washed up on a Long Island shore last week, leaving marine researchers and beachgoers stumped as to how it ended up there.

The finback whale's body washed up on Smith Point County Park on Fire Island, according to The Wall Street Journal. Biologist Kimberly Durham told reporters that a preliminary external examination Thursday did not reveal a cause of death, but said she did find smaller scavenger bite marks along the carcass.

"Along the belly exposed along the left lateral side are pretty significant scavenging marks," she said during a conference call. "Sharks will be attracted to whale carcasses."



The Riverhead Foundation, a nonprofit marine research and preservation organization, conducted a full forensic examination and concluded that it appeared some sort of vessel had hit the whale.

"There is evidence of advanced decomposition and extensive bruising on right dorsal and lateral sides of the animal," the foundation wrote in a statement on its Facebook page over the weekend. "The finding of blunt force trauma is consistent with injuries sustained with a vessel strike. Samples will be sent out for further analysis to confirm these preliminary findings."

Finback whales are usually found off New York and New Jersey shores and can weigh up to one ton per foot in length. Durham told The Journal that the Long Island whale likely weighed about 30 to 40 tons. It has since been buried, she added.

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A dead whale measuring a whopping 58 feet long washed up on a Long Island shore last week, leaving marine researchers and beachgoers stumped as to how it ended up there.
dead, whale, long island, beach
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2014-56-14
Tuesday, 14 Oct 2014 11:56 AM
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