British Divers Marine Life Rescue
British Divers Marine Life Rescue (photo: Steve Marsh)
British Divers Marine Rescue


2011-08-15 16:39:52

Sowerby’s Beaked Whale strands on Norfolk coast

Sowerby’s Beaked Whale strands on Norfolk coast (Photo: Gary Hibbard NWT)BDMLR received a call from the police regarding a stranded dolphin near Thornham, Norfolk, mid-morning today, 15th August 2011.

Unfortunately, there was no response from the number given to them from the member of public who reported it so we were initially unable to confirm the species or its condition.

In discussion with Alison Charles at RSPCA East Winch, it transpired that the animal was in fact a whale and that a warden from Norfolk Wildlife Trust was with it.  The Trust put us in touch with the warden, Gary Hibbard, who had identified it as a Sowerby's Beaked Whale, stranded high on top of the marshes and in poor condition.  Gary sent photos through for confirmation.

An RSPCA team with a vet attended and the Sowerby's was euthanased.  A deep-diving species and specialist feeder, the whale was well away from its natural habitat and was in too poor a condition to refloat.  Pathologists from the Zoological Institute of London are on their way and will perform a post mortem this evening.

Stephen Marsh
BDMLR Operations Manager