Washed up baby humpback whale euthanised in Australia

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Brisbane, Aug 8 (IANS) A baby humpback whale was euthanised on Tuesday after it washed up on a beach in Australia’s Queensland state, officials said.

The four-metre long baby whale had injuries that were consistent with being struck by a boat, and after being separated from its mother, was put down in order to spare it from any further suffering, reports Xinhua news agency.

Queensland Environment Minister Steven Miles said efforts need to increase to ensure that people on boats stay away from these sea mammals.

“It’s devastating to have to put down a whale because people have ignored the distance rules, come too close and hit this whale with their boat,” Miles said in a statement.

“This incident should be a clear message to everyone to keep their distance from passing whales.”

This latest incident comes days after two fishermen had their boat struck by a separate humpback whale. The two were knocked unconscious and had to be hospitalised.

In June, another baby humpback whale was euthanised after coming ashore on the New South Wales coast in similar circumstances, and at the time, marine rescue organisation Orrca’s vice president Shona Lorigan said that these young whales are usually attempting to make their migration from Antarctica after being weaned by their mothers.

–IANS

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