The bodies of five dead sperm whales have been found washed up on the east coast of England, drawing huge crowds of local residents. All five animals are believed to have belonged to the same pod.
The first whale to wash up was discovered in Hunstanton, Norfolk, and was quickly followed by three more on a single beach in Skegness, Lincolnshire. Today, a local man in Wainfleet spotted the body of a fifth whale, which he immediately reported to the authorities. The site of the latest beaching is just five miles from the point where the three whales washed up on Sunday.
Nor is Britain the only country to suddenly find itself dealing with a surprise influx of beached whales; a total of twelve have washed up at various locations in Holland and Germany since 11 January and nobody yet has an explanation for the phenomenon.
The three bodies in Skegness have also been an inadvertent cause of controversy after activists sprayed anti-nuclear messages such as “Fukushima RIP – man killed me” on their backs. A spokesman for East Lindsey District Council condemned the protest and went on to confirm that the animals will remain where they are until a post-mortem has been completed.
The whales have drawn crowds of onlookers, some of whom were able to witness marine experts working on the bodies. Bystanders claimed to see “a huge blast of air” when one animal’s carcass was cut into, which caused the whale’s intestines to spill out onto the Lincolnshire sand. Although the cause of death is unknown, it has been speculated that the whales could have become disorientated after accidentally entering shallow water.