Whale dies near Portobello Beach despite rescue team's efforts to save it

An injured whale has died near one of Edinburgh’s beaches despite attempts to rescue it.

Tuesday, 13th October 2020, 4:02 pm

The sad discovery of the wounded animal was made on Tuesday afternoon at the foot of Brunstane Burn, between Portobello and Musselburgh beaches.

A group of volunteers and a member of animal charity SSPCA made attempts to rescue it, but sadly the whale – identified as a Sowerby’s beaked whale – died shortly after midday.

The body has been sent off for post-mortem in an attempt to understand the circumstances surrounding the mammal’s death.

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Large sea mammal washed up at the foot of Brunstane Burn picture: supplied

Scottish SPCA senior animal rescue officer, Melissa Maitland, said: “We were alerted to the distressed Sowerby's beaked whale at around 12.30pm on Tuesday 13 October.

“I assisted a group of volunteers from the British Divers Marine Life Rescue, who were trying to help the stricken animal.

“Unfortunately, despite our best efforts, the whale sadly passed away.

“There are lots of reasons whales and other marine mammals sometimes beach themselves such as changing tide or losing their way. The body will be taken for post-mortem by the National Museum of Scotland to try to ascertain why this happened.

“If anyone comes across a sick, injured or distressed animal they should call the Scottish SPCA animal helpline on 03000 999 999.”

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