40,000 Pound Whale Carcass Rotting Near Malibu Home
Photo courtesy: NBC News
NBCNEWS.COM - A 40,000-pound whale likely killed by a ship was decomposing near the Malibu
beach homes of Hollywood celebrities on Thursday, as officials tried to figure
out what to do with the carcass -- and the stench.
"It's not physically capable of being moved because of its condition," Kevin
Marble of the L.A. County Lifeguards, told Malibu Patch. "It's so embedded in
sand that they won't be able to get it out. The body will be pulled apart."
The juvenile fin whale's carcass was found Monday morning and vets with the
California Wildlife Center later determined it had died from injuries consistent
with a ship strike.
Burying the 40-foot-long carcass could be an option, Marble said, but it
would have to be moved since it now sits in a rocky area.
"It has to be exhumed and moved and buried," he added.
California State Parks has also been involved in the talks but did not have
an immediate plan.
"We don't have a boat. We don't have the resources to drag it off the beach,"
parks spokesman Craig Sap told Malibu Patch.
NBCLosAngeles.com reported that agencies
were trying to figure out who was responsible for dealing with the carcass. A
City of Malibu spokeswoman said removal plans had not been finalized, it
The L.A. County Department of Beaches and Harbors said it was not
"It's on a private beach" controlled by homeowners down to the high tide line
and the state is responsible for the tidelands, spokeswoman Carol Baker told the
The whale washed up between Paradise Cove and Point Dume, near the homes of
Barbra Streisand and Bob Dylan.
Residents who got up close to the whale included Mari Stanley,
"It's a beautiful beast," she said. "It just looked like
someone had picked it up and dropped it on the beach."
Fin whales are listed as endangered under the federal Endangered Species Act.
They can grow to up to 85 feet, weigh up to 80 tons and live for up to 90
The West Coast population of fin whales was estimated at around 2,500 in
2003, down from nearly 3,300 in 1996, the federal government says.
Key threats to the species are ship strikes, entanglement in fishing gear,
less prey due to overfishing, habitat degradation and disturbance from
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