A Young Humpback Whale Paying for the Sins of a Fishermen
At five am Tuesday morning, a man walking his dog noticed what appeared to be a capsized ship on the shoreline, but after moving closer he realized that it was a humpback whale. The humpback whale washed up on the beach in White Rock and many residents in that area mentioned that they thought they had spotted a whale as early as Sunday. When the whale was spotted that morning, it was said to have been alive, but an hour later it took its last breath. The humpback whale was only three years old, and the exact cause of death has not been determined.
The humpback whale is listed as a threatened animal, and because of this the public has become very intrigued as to why this whale washed up on shore. When the whale was first spotted on White Rock beach, he was wrapped from his mouth to tail in fishing netting. Mr. Paul Cottrell, the mammal coordinator from the Department of Fisheries and Oceans Marine, stated that this might be a “case of accidental entanglement.” They have not confirmed this, but many are saying that the whale may have suffered for months before reaching the shore. The fishing net has been collected and experts will try and figure out where it came from. This information may lead to the reason for the death of the juvenile humpback whale. The mayor of White Rock, Wayne Baldwin, is blaming careless fishermen for the death of this young whale.
The public outroar is astonishing. Not only does the mayor blame fishermen, but so do many residents in the White Rock area; many gathered to see this whale on White Rock beach. Children and adults came with buckets filled with water to try and help save the whale. At around nine am Tuesday morning the whale had passed away and officials set up a perimeter around the whale. They warned the public that the whale had many scars that had become infected, and it was unsafe for anyone to touch the whale. This warning did not stop people from coming to visit, and many left flowers and paid their respects since the whale died.
The Coast Guard stepped in Wednesday morning and towed the whale with a hovercraft to Boundary Bay where it is now temporarily anchored underwater until a more permanent solution is decided upon. Many people are wondering what happens now. There have been rumors that they are going to dump the whale back into the middle of the ocean, but nothing has been confirmed. For now, it is just a matter of time before the young Whale is moved off the beach. Hopefully, this will inspire awareness regarding our ill treatment of marine life, and if someone is at fault for the death of the whale, they will be punished.