Coast KZN

06 Oct 2016

Whale death investigated

Mia Moorcroft (Zululand Observer)


‘They are regularly seen breaching close to the shore.’

The death of an adult humpback whale found washed up on Sunday at Cape Vidal beach in St Lucia is being investigated by iSimangaliso Wetland Park officials.

Isimangaliso infrastructure manager, Mike Bouwer, said the 13-metre long giant had visible bite marks along its body, suspected to have been inflicted by sharks.

It also had items of flotsam, including plastic and netting in its jaw.

The team arranged heavy equipment to move the whale further north on the beach on Tuesday.

‘An adult Humpback whale may reach 16 metres in length and weigh in excess of 30 tons,’ said iSimangaliso spokesperson Terri Castis.

‘Between June and November, Humpback and other whales transit the iSimangaliso’s marine protected area as they move northwards from the Antarctic, returning south after several months.

‘They are regularly seen breaching close to the shore.’