An endangered Finback whale was found beached at New York’s Breezy Point on Wednesday. According to ABC News, officials have no idea what caused the 60-foot whale to come ashore, although there are signs of illness. NOAA Regional Specialist Mendy Garron reports that the animal is emaciated and in poor condition, and that getting it back into the ocean with a favorable prognosis is doubtful.
Finback whales were frequent targets of whalers during the twentieth century and are now endangered. Experts estimate that only 100,000 individuals are left in the wild and humans and man-made obstacles continue to threaten their slow recovery. The Finback is both the second longest and second largest animal in the world, behind the blue whale. They can grow to be 90 feet long and weigh 70 tons.
Garron says that emergency responders are waiting for the water level to lower before further actions will be taken.