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34-Foot-Long Whale Found Washed Ashore In Gwadar

A 34-foot-long whale was found washed ashore in Gwadar on Tuesday, which was buried before its body could be examined by experts.

There were conflicting claims about the whale’s identity.

After examining the pictures reportedly taken by security officials, the World Wild Life (WWF) Pakistan said that the whale looked like a calf of a blue whale. However, a Marine biologist working in Gwadar said it was a Bryde’s whale.

“We confirmed that it’s a calf of the blue whale after sharing its picture with other experts,” said Mohammad Moazzam Khan, a representative of the WWF-P told Dawn. He said that the whale possibly died after getting entangled in a fishing net, arguing that there was no evidence of it colliding with a ship.

Marine biologist Abdur Raheem said it was a Bryde’s whale and he had confirmed it with colleagues abroad. He said the Bryde’s whale belongs to the same family as blue whale with minor distinction in features of both. He opined that the carcass was around 3 days old, but nothing could be said about the cause of the whale’s death.

It was also said that some fisherman searching for ambergris, a valuable waxy substance that originates as a secretion in the intestines of the sperm whale, damaged the carcass thinking it was a sperm whale.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List has listed the whale as an endangered specie and its global population today stands at around 10,000 to 25,000.

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Naya Daur