Dead 10m whale lures sharks to Newport Beach, in Sydney

 

 
 
 
28-04-2011

Authorities are considering cutting up the carcass of a 10m sperm whale, which is attracting sharks at Sydney’s Newport Beach. Picture: Will Swanton Source: Supplied

AUTHORITIES are considering cutting up the carcass of a 10m sperm whale, which is attracting sharks to Sydney’s Newport Beach.

The body of the wedged amphibian has drawn schools of sharks to the popular surfing spot, forcing the beach to be closed.

Local residents are flocking to the scene, but not for long, as the smell of rotting flesh wafts throughout nearby Newport village.

Surf rescue staff are forbidding surfers from entering the water.

The whale, estimated to weigh 12 tonnes, was first sighted off nearby Long Reef on Sunday.

Sharks were spotted ravaging the carcass.

The whale was without a tail and had chunks of flesh missing when it washed ashore on Tuesday morning.

The National Parks and Wildlife Service has cordoned off the entrance to the rocks at the northern end of Newport Beach.

Officials have hoped since Tuesday that high tides would wash the carcass back out to sea.

That has not happened.

Blood from the whale is running out to sea, luring sharks, visible from shore, to the area.

A tug-of-war between National Parks and Wildlife Service, ORRCA and Broken Bay Water Police has caused the three-day delay in action.

The Australian Online was told at the scene by a National Parks and Wildlife officer that the missing tail made it virtually impossible to tow.

“Dissecting” the body is the most likely option for the 15-year-old sperm whale.

It was measured at 10.1m on Tuesday but would be 12m with a tail.

It was wedged into the cliff at the northern end of Newport Beach today.

Copyright 2011 News Limited

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