Female pygmy sperm whale, calf die on St. Augustine Beach



ST. AUGUSTINE BEACH, Fla. - A necropsy will be performed Friday on a female pygmy whale and calf found stranded on St. Augustine Beach.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission was notified by St. Johns County law enforcement that a whale was stranded on the beach, according to Nadia Gordon, FWC marine mammal research biologist.

The first stranding was a pygmy sperm whale calf and shortly after, an adult female, likely the calf's mother, was stranded.

When FWC and the Georgia Aquarium Conservation Field Station Marineland responded, the calf was still alive and the female died. Both were alive at stranding, Gordon said.

When pygmy sperm whales beach, something is wrong and the stranding could have been complications due to birthing.

A necropsy will be conducted by FWC and Georgia Aquarium to learn why the whales became stranded, Gordon said.

If you see injured, dead or tangled marine mammals, call the FWC's Wildlife Alert Hotline at 1-888-404-FWCC (3922).