Around 200 pilot whales were found dead after being stranded in Macquarie Bay, on the island of Tasmania, Australia.
Australian authorities reported that the rescue teams managed to keep 35 of the specimens affected by this massive stranding alive, and are working to return them to the sea.
The move to deep water is targeting the whales with the greatest hope of survival, and is done with the support of cranes and boats.
To keep the whales alive, while the careful and slow operations proceeded, rescuers placed wet towels and dumped buckets of water on the animals trapped in the sandbanks.
The authorities confirmed, according to the public channel ABC, that two of the 35 survivors were once again stranded on Macquarie Bay’s Ocean Beach, also known by locals as the “Gates of Hell.”
This massive stranding occurred exactly two years after some 470 pilot whales, also known as pilot whales, were stranded in this same place, of which only a hundred could be rescued and taken to the high seas.
“Unlike the stranding we had two years ago, in which many of those animals were in the harbor estuary and therefore were stranded in much more protected waters, (in this case) the environmental conditions and the waves in the exposed west coast, Ocean Beach, is certainly taking its toll on the animals,” Incident Controller Brendon Clark told ABC.
The incident in Macquarie Bay came a day after 14 sperm whales died Tuesday after being stranded on a beach on King Island, also in the Tasmanian region.
These and other marine mammals are frequently stranded on the coasts of southern Australia and New Zealand, without experts having been able to clarify the reasons, although they usually attribute them to diseases, navigation errors, sudden changes in tides, persecution predators or extreme weather conditions.