Stranded Beaked Whales
by firmm Team
On Monday, March 17th, we were informed of a stranded whale. He was stranded along the steep coast, on a place where we normally do our rocky reef excursions. We assume that the stranded whale was a Cuvier's Beaked Whale. These whales have not been seen often and are very rare here in the Straits of Gibraltar. Back on August 2nd 2004, our crew sighted 40 Beaked Whales making their way westwards, which leads us to assume that these whales might have been Cuvier's Beaked Whales, too.
The whale was in good condition and did not smell bad yet, but a biopsy-sample had already been taken by C.R.E.M.A.. This organization collects statistics about stranded tortoises and marine mammals, taking samples to find out the cause of death.
Later we were told that another Beaked Whale was stranded a month ago.
Beaked Whales are very good divers (about 1000m deep) and they feed mainly on squids. Most of the time they can be found on the edge of a continental shelf where there are underwater canyons.
Photo: Nadine Cremer, firmm