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Sussex whale rescuers help stranded minke whale
10:35am Wednesday 26th September 2012 in News
UPDATE: Sussex whale experts tried in vain to help a 26ft (8m) minke whale found on a North Sea beach today.
The whale was found alive but in a poor condition in Druridge Bay, Northumberland, the Uckfield-based British Divers Marine Life Rescue charity said this morning.
"We have people down there at the moment and a local vet is on her way," said the spokeswoman.
"It is not looking in very good shape and it is incredibly thin. We will wait until the vet is down there and then we will take it from there."
Sadly, by lunchtime the whale had been put down after the veterinary surgeon, Sam Prescott, decided it was too ill to survive.
He said: ""I received a call saying someone had found a whale stranded on the beach.
"Others had ascertained that it wasn't going to be viable for a refloat and so the most humane thing to do was going to be euthanasia.
"Myself and other vets have now done that and it's now a case of salvaging the whale and making it available for post-mortem.
"We don't know yet what's caused it. It's an adult whale and its condition is not fantastic and it may well have been sick prior to stranding.
"I've not encountered a minke whale stranding in this area at all before."
The charity's website says it is "dedicated to the rescue and well-being of all marine animals in distress around the UK".
Earlier, the charity's operations directory Stephen Marsh said the minke whale wass unlikely to survive.
"We have a vet on the scene and we are looking at the options," he said. "We don't think it is viable for a refloat. It is too thin, it hasn't got any muscle on it at all, and the last thing we do is put an animal back in the sea that's likely to suffer and come back again."