Story By: Amanda Morales, Sub-Editor: Joseph Golder, Agency: Newsflash
The body of this huge dead sei whale which stretches almost 45 feet has been found on the southern coast of Spain.
The cetacean reportedly washed up on the coast of the Donana National Park in the municipality of Algeciras, in the province of Cadiz in Andalusia in southern Spain at the end of last week.
The stranding protocol was immediately activated and veterinarians from the Algeciras Marine Environment Management Centre who confirmed it was dead performed an autopsy to determine the cause of death.
The results of the findings have not yet been made public.
According to the National Park press statement, the sei whale (Balaenoptera Borealis) corpse was in a very good state of conservation and its skeleton is going to be conserved to be later put on display.
The whale reportedly measured almost 14 metres (45.9 feet) in length.
The experts said it was an extremely rare occurrence and it was the first stranding of a sei whale documented in Andalusia in the last 20 years.
The sei whale inhabits all oceans, except the poles and the tropics.
It lives mostly far from the coast and inhabits deep waters, which is why its presence is not common on the Spanish coasts, and less in the waters of the Mediterranean Sea.
After the blue whale (Balaenoptera musculus) and the fin whale (Balaenoptera physalus), the sei whale is the third largest animal on the planet, and one of the fastest whales, capable of reaching speeds in the water of more than 45 kph (28 mph).
According to the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) 203,588 sei whales, representing 80 percent of the population, were hunted and caught in the 20th Century.
The sei whale is currently considered as endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
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