Beachgoers and residents gather around a beached Whale in Babak, Samal on Saturday, December 17, 2016. The Whale was alive Friday night, but died Saturday
Photo: Dean Ortiz

Philippines: Beached Whale had plastic trash, fish nets in stomach
By Yas D. Ocampo, 18th December 2016;

An initial check conducted by the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) here reportedly revealed that the Sperm Whale (Physeter macrocephalus), which was found beached in front of a resort in Babak District in the Island Garden City of Samal Saturday, had large amounts of plastic trash, fishing nets, hooks and even a piece of coco lumber in its stomach.

According to BFAR Region 11 Director Fatima Idris, the debris were found inside the stomach of the 37-foot Whale as the agency conducted a necropsy Sunday. She said the Whale was a juvenile male.

Cetacean expert Darrel Blatchley had earlier suspected that the Whale could have either choked on plastic trash or was mortally wounded by propellers of vessels plying the Davao Gulf.

News of the Whale washing up the beach on a resort in Samal broke out late Saturday afternoon.

BFAR has a marine mammal stranding network which is always on the look-out for Whales that could be stranded in the Davao Gulf.

Netizens shared video clips of local officials using a backhoe to drag the carcass of the Whale to shore.

Source: Manila Bulletin

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