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Rescuers work to save pilot whales off Florida's Everglades, signs of hope seen

By Kyle Johnson,

Rescue workers have been trying to help a pod of short-finned pilot whales after they were stranded near Florida's Everglade National Park on Wednesday, but there has been some signs of hope.

Since rescue workers from several agencies, including the Coast Guard and the National Park Service, began working to try and save a pod of whales that became stranded at least 11 have died, USA Today reports. Six died after beaching themselves and at least four others had to be euthanized.

Dozens of whales were discovered to have become stranded in three feet deep water, nearly 20 miles from where they are usually found in these waters. Rescue workers have been trying to convince the whales to head back into deeper water by positioning their boats and using aluminum pipes used to create vibrations in the water.

"We're doing our best to do what we can," Blair Mase, coordinator for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's marine mammal stranding network. "Knowing what usually happens with these whales ... they're likely compromised and the outcome might not be good."

However, CNN reports, officials have some reason for hope after the 35 remaining whales have begun moving into deeper waters. They were heading offshore and were last reported in 18-feet deep water. Scientists were calling it a "very fluid situation," but were now somewhat optimistic.

A total of 51 whales were initially spotted by fishermen, but 11 died or were euthanized and five went missing during the night.

image: Wikimedia Commons

 
 

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