CAPE TOWN - Beachgoers have been urged to stay out of the ocean at all of the Clifton beaches as a precautionary measure after a humpback whale carcass measuring about 9m washed ashore on Tuesday Morning.
Law enforcement officers are there to secure the immediate area and the Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment has been notified and will collect samples and measurements for scientific analysis.
While the cause of death was uncertain, it was likely to be natural, according to the City.
A large pod of humpbacks has been visiting the Atlantic seaboard since November and this is the second to wash ashore, the first was an 8m carcass washed ashore at Sea Point on December 9.
Deputy mayor and spatial planning and environment mayco Eddie Andrews said: “Given the topography of the area, it is impossible to remove the carcass with machinery from land.
“We will need to remove it from the sea with the help of a large vessel at high tide, which is approximately at 4.30pm today.
“If all goes as planned, we will tow the whale carcass off the beach to the Oceana Power Boat Club where it will be loaded and taken to the Vissershok landfill.
“In the meantime, I request the public to please avoid the area and to allow the agencies on site to do what needs to be done.
“The City also discourages any bathing at the Clifton beaches.
“This is normal practice along the City’s coastline when a whale carcass washes ashore and is a precautionary measure in the unlikely event that sharks may be attracted to the area.”