Beached Whale Buried At Stinson Beach, Necropsy Reveals Trauma, Hemorrhaging

A fin whale that died on Stinson Beach in Marin County on Monday morning has been buried at the beach following a necropsy, according to a spokeswoman from the Marine Mammal Center.

The young whale calf, estimated to be about a year old, was reported to Marin County Parks around 7 a.m. on Monday on the north side of Stinson Beach near Upton Beach, Chief Park Ranger Rob Ruiz said.

The whale, estimated to be about 40 feet long, was found thrashing on its side. The whale was pronounced dead around 10 a.m., according to Ruiz.

According to Marine Mammal Center spokeswoman Kate Harle, it is likely that the whale washed up on shore around midnight during high tide.

The center’s veterinary team conducted a necropsy at Stinson Beach to determine the cause of death, Harle said.

Blood was found around the whale’s mouth and once the whale was rolled over, the center’s Director of Veterinary Science Dr. Shawn Johnson, discovered trauma to the sternum area and internal hemorrhaging around the heart, Harle said.

Air was also present in the subcutaneous tissue, between the muscle and the fat, which is indicative of trauma, according to Harle.

Until further microscopic examination of the tissue is conducted, scientists at the center said they are unable to determine the cause of the whale’s death.

This is the center’s fourth case involving a beached fin whale since 2010, Harle said.

Two of those whales died after being struck by boats, according to Harle.

The National Park Service buried the fin whale at Stinson Beach to decompose on Monday evening, Harle said.

Hannah Albarazi, Bay City News

Please make sure your comment adheres to our comment policy. If it doesn't, it may be deleted. Repeat violations may cause us to revoke your commenting privileges. No one wants that!
  • Natbo

    The whale was buried in a shallow grave in the beach. Yesterday fluid from the whale began to bubble up through the sand creating a very bad smell. Not sure why this is happening but it seems the burial was not well thought out. Rangers have erected a barrier around the grave as it is quite a disturbing site.

    • filmrecords

      Better off throwing it out to sea

      • filmrecords

        I mean we throw everything else in the world there….what’s the dif?

  • Natbo

    The whale was buried in a shallow grave in the beach. Yesterday fluid from the whale began to bubble up through the sand creating a very bad smell. Not sure why this is happening but it seems the burial was not well thought out. Rangers have erected a barrier around the grave as it is quite a disturbing site.

    • filmrecords

      Better off throwing it out to sea

      • filmrecords

        I mean we throw everything else in the world there….what’s the dif?

  • Ben Jensen

    not to mention the great whites it will attract to the beach for the next year to come, should have been dragged out to the Farallons with a tugboat

  • Ben Jensen

    not to mention the great whites it will attract to the beach for the next year to come, should have been dragged out to the Farallons with a tugboat

  • Ben Jensen
  • Ben Jensen