One Mile Beach Closed After Juvenile Humpback Whale Washes Ashore

One Mile Beach was closed Thursday morning after beach goers discovered that a young humpback whale washed ashore overnight.

The tragic scenes were first reported to ORRCA at 5am by a member of the public and the rescue team along with National Parks attended the scene shortly after.

After initial assessments for a return to sea operation it was confirmed that the juvenile humpback, which was eight metres in length, had passed away.

“It’s a tragedy that this young humpback has been discovered to be deceased,” said an ORCCA representative.

“We’re unsure of the circumstances at this stage but it’s never a good thing no matter the cause.”

ORRCA along with Port Stephens Council, National Parks and Surf Life Saving NSW were working together to remove the whale and it’s believed that the beach will remain closed in the short-term.

Ian Crawford from Port Stephens Council said that authorities were working quickly to recover the whale.

“We’re working with ORRCA, Parks and Surf Life Saving to remove the whale as as soon as possible,” said Mr Crawford.

“It’s a council owned part of the beach so we want to ensure the safety of our constituents.”

Phil Rock from Surf Life Saving NSW expected that the beach will remain closed until at least the weekend.

“The beach will be closed today and tomorrow and then we’ll reassess for Saturday,” said Mr Rock.

According to ORCCA the organisation is expecting more incidents like this to occur as whale migrations continue in the coming months.

Tissue samples will be taken from the young whale to discover exactly what the cause of death was. 

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By Mitch LEES

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