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How a Sei Whale get in the middle of a field

September 29, 2011
A rare breed of whale found dead 800 yards from the shoreline in the Humber Estuary has baffled marine experts.The 33ft mammal, thought to be a Sei whale, was discovered in salt marshes on the north bank of the River Humber.

It is thought that the whale became stranded in shallow waters, rolled over onto its blowhole and died, before the tide retreated and left it behind, near the village of Skeffling.

The 33ft whale was found beached 800 yards from the shoreline of the Humber Estuary.

Experts are amazed by the beached whales, as this one, like others, are from species not normally stranded on the British coast.

The Yorkshire Wildlife Trust has spent the summer monitoring the area due to an increase in whale sighting and activity.

Conservationists believe the increase in the number of strandings could be explained by a change in sea currents bringing colder streams of Arctic water into the North Sea and with them whales that would not normally pass so close to the UK shoreline.

Experts who examined the animal said they are 95 per cent certain it is a female Sei whale and say the huge sea creature could simply have been looking for food when the tide turned.

Kirsten Smith, North Seas Living Seas manager at Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, said: ‘The area where the whale was found is salt marsh, which is still connected to the sea.

Andy Gibson from Yorkshire Wildlife Trust examines the young female whale on the banks of the Humber Estuary on Wednesday.

Last month a 30ft baby Minke whale became beached in a shallow dock near Grimsby, Lincolnshire, but rescuers managed to save it after an eight-hour mission.

Over 50 emergency personnel descended on Grimsby’s Immingham Docks, including the RSPCA, Coastguard, RNLI, fire services and British Marine Rescue.

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