24 Nov '15, 11am

337 whales beached in largest stranding event ever and no one knows why

In the largest stranding event ever recorded, 337 dead whales were beached on a remote fjord in southern Chile’s Patagonia. Scientists discovered the whales during an observation flight, but haven’t been able to examine the carcasses up close yet due to the roughness of the seas. Researchers are relying on aerial photography and satellite images to discern as many details as possible about this startling mass die-off. Without examining the whales directly, scientists can’t be certain what species they are because the bodies are severely decayed, but the whales’ size and location leads experts to believe they are sei whales, according to lead scientist Carolina Simon Gutstein of the Universidad de Chile and Consejo de Monumentos Nacionales in Santiago. Sei whales are an endangered species usually found in deep waters far from coastlines. Related: Study shows mass die-offs o...

Full article: http://inhabitat.com/337-whales-beached-in-largest-strand...

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