28 May 2009

Blue whale washes up on remote coastline

8:53 pm on 28 May 2009

A massive blue whale has been found washed up on a remote beach on the north-west Nelson coast.

The Department of Conservation says the rare whale is about 27m long.

It was found by paua divers on Tuesday, about 6km south of

Whanganui Inlet.

Whale expert Anton Van Helden, of Te Papa, says he would like to conduct a post-mortem examinaion on the mammal but the beach is not easily accessible.

He says the whale will have to remain there, or it could be washed out by the tide.

DOC says there have been only 14 other known strandings of blue whales in New Zealand.