Durban - Marine experts are investigating what caused the stranding of a whale on Pipeline Beach in Amanzimtoti on Tuesday.
The whale died soon after thrashing about in shallow water early this morning. The sub-adult humpback whale is between 4 and 6 meters in length said Jennifer Olbers Marine Ecologist at Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife. Olbers said she cannot speculate on why the whale stranded on the beach until proper tests were done. She said the whale would be more exposed during low tide.
"eThekwini municipality is responsible for carcass removal and disposal. Members of the public may not harvest or take pieces away. This is a protected species so taking any pieces away is illegal," Olbers said.
A whale had also beached on the Pipeline beach seashore in July 2014.
The South African Association for Marine Biological Research (SAAMBR) website said dolphins and whales may strand along the beaches of KwaZulu Natal for many reasons that may be natural or as a result of human activities.
Some of these reasons include disease, old age or parasitic infection, abandoned calves, or malnourished juveniles; severe oceanographic and weather conditions or they may have been bitten by predators such as sharks or orcas.
Human activities include pollution or an injury from fishing gear or boats.