A Southern Right whale was found entangled in rope in Table Bay on Wednesday, the SA Whale Disentanglement Network (SAWDN) said.

The Transnet National Ports Authority discovered the 15-metre whale and alerted the network, spokesman Craig Lambinon said.

The rope was wrapped around the animal’s belly and tail. It had cut into and become embedded in the whale’s blubber.

“The whale appeared to be lethargic and gave us the impression, from its calm demeanour, that it was tired and may have been entangled for quite some time and we feel that the whale is in a poor condition,” Lambinon said.

“In total 27 cuts were made in attempts to free rope from the whale,” he said.

The rescue workers was able to remove large sections of the rope.

They were optimistic about the whale’s prospects, but concerned about the pieces of rope that remained embedded in its blubber.

The SAWDN has as its members volunteers from organisations including the National Sea Rescue Institute, SA National Parks, the environmental affairs department, and the police. – Sapa