Australia is home to a large number of whales, with about 30 different species of whale living in its waters. In Hobart, Australia, about 230 pilot whales have washed up and become beached. The pod was stranded on Ocean beach, and at least half of them were presumed alive.
The Marine Conservation Program immediately began to gather whale rescue gear and reported to the area quickly. Residents and locals were alerted and told to avoid going near the beach. Whales in Australia are a protected species, even when one has been deceased, it is still a punishable offense to come into contact with a carcass.
Marine scientists have reported that the beaching of this many whales may be due to rising temperatures. The temperature change is causing ocean currents to shift and the main food sources for whales to move and become displaced. The whales were most likely already in a bad physical state due to a lack of food, which most likely led them to risk moving closer to the shore to retrieve food. There are several reasons whales become beached, and researchers have said that we will never know why pilot whales are so commonly beached in such large groups. Marine conservation groups said that the whales that had not been able to be saved are going to be tested for toxicology.
On Thursday, wildlife experts rescued 32 beached whales. Half the pod was presumed to be alive, but after a long night of surf, 35 whaled were left alive the following day. Of that 35, 32 were refloated, rescued, and released.
About 470 whales were found beached on September 21, 2022, on different sandbars and beaches. Of those, 111 were released alive, but the rest sadly did not make it. The entrance to the harbor, which was where the beached whales were located, is known to be notoriously shallow and is called Hell’s Gate.