LEWES, Del. (AP) — A necropsy has found that an endangered fin whale that died after it became beached along the Delaware coast had multiple underlying conditions.
The Marine Education Research and Rehabilitation Institute said its necropsy determined the whale had significant parasitic infections in the liver, lungs and kidneys, WDEL reported Sunday.
The institute also said the whale’s thin body and empty stomach suggested it had been impaired and had not eaten recently.
The whale first showed up in Lewes on Thursday, stranded on a sandbar, news outlets reported. It was able to swim back out to sea but later became beached on the ocean side of The Point at Cape Henlopen State Park, where the Delaware Bay meets the Atlantic Ocean.
The whale stopped breathing around lunchtime Friday, the station reported. A team from the Delaware Natural Resources and Environmental Control buried it on the beach.