Photo: Twitter - Humpback whale discovered beached in Alaska on Monday

Young humpback whale dies after 2 strandings in Alaska

The whale may have followed a pod of belugas and likely was unfamiliar with the area

A young humpback whale that twice beached in Alaska was found dead south of Anchorage.

The whale on Sunday and Monday twice become stranded along Turnagain Arm, KTUU-TV reported . The second time, the whale was just south of Girdwood, a ski resort community at the southern boundary of Anchorage. It freed itself Monday night.

On Tuesday, however, the whale was again beached a few miles south of its previous stranding, said Verena Gill of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the Cook Inlet beluga whale recovery co-ordinator, where wildlife responders discovered it had died.

READ MORE: Cat trapped in Edmonton sinkhole lured out by treats

The whale may have followed a pod of belugas and likely was unfamiliar with the area, Gill said.

Observers had seen a larger whale in the area that could have been its mother, Gill said.

The whale’s death changed plans from a rescue to a necropsy. NOAA Fisheries spokeswoman Julie Speegle said a necropsy would begin Tuesday afternoon. Teams planned to work until the tide came in at 5 p.m.

Turnagain Arm is known for having some of the highest tides in the world and mud on the tidal flats is extremely dangerous.

Silt particles are laid down in a loosely oriented pattern by waters that carry them into the inlet, according to the Alaska Public Information Centers. When disturbed by feet, the particles resettle into a more tightly packed arrangement, making extraction much more difficult with the potential of trapping people who venture onto them.

Signs along the arm warn people to stay off the mud to avoid being trapped and drowned by the incoming tide.

READ MORE: Beluga whale with Russian harness raises alarm in Norway

The Associated Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

CGL must revise impact assessment on Unist’ot’en Healing Center

Environmental Assessment Office not satisfied with report’s shortcomings

Vandals cause damage estimated at $3,000

“It was just malicious, stupid, drunken behaviour” - Thwaites

Confusion surrounds terms of RCMP withdrawal from pipeline construction area

B.C. Deputy Commissioner clarifies terms of agreement following minister’s statements

Stop checks, searches of Wet’suwet’en pipeline opposers unlawful: Watchdog

Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs, the B.C. Civil Liberties Association, Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs file complaint

Wet’suwet’en pipeline supporters speak up

“Protesters get one side of the story and they stand up with their fists in the air.”

VIDEO: Behind the scenes of turning newspapers into digital archives

Kelowna Capital News donated materials dating from 1980 to 2000

Landlord ordered to pay $11K after harassing B.C. mom to move days after giving birth

Germaine Valdez was pressured to move just a few days after giving birth by C-section to her child

Heart attacks strike B.C. husband and wife just over one year apart

Courtenay couple share personal stories to bring awareness to heart month

‘Nothing surprises us anymore:’ U.S. border officials find brain in package

U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents found the brain packed in a glass mason jar in a Canada Post shipment

B.C., Ottawa sign sweeping 30-year deal for northern caribou habitat

West Moberly, Saulteau co-manage new protection on two million acres

Eyes on police after Trudeau orders blockades torn down, injunctions enforced

The RCMP in B.C. have sent a letter to the traditional leaders of the Wet’suwet’en Nation

B.C. massage therapist suspended following allegations of sexual misconduct

While suspended, Leonard Krekic is not entitled to practice as an RMT in B.C.

Cheapest in B.C.: Penticton gas prices dip below $1 per litre

Two stores in Penticton have gas below a dollar.

Loans or gifts? Judge rules woman must pay B.C. man back $7K

B.C. judge rules that woman must pay back more than $7,000 in advanced funds to man

Most Read