Dead 50-Foot Whale Washes Ashore in Point Loma

Fin whale was found near Point Loma Waste Treatment Plant on Saturday

021509 Dead whale

A 50-foot fin whale that washed ashore on an isolated Point Loma beach on Saturday is set to be moved in order to determine its cause of death, according to San Diego Lifeguard officials.

The whale washed ashore near the Point Loma Waste Treatment Plant on Gatchell Road just before 2 p.m., said Lt. Greg Buchanan.

The whale had yet to decompose and so Buchanan believed it hadn't been dead long.

The animal, which is on the U.S. Endangered Species list, is set to be moved in the morning within the next few days when the tide is at its highest point, Buchanan said. Then scientists can determine how it died.

The area where the animal was found isn’t accessible to the public and won’t affect any beach activities, Buchanan said.

San Diego lifeguards said they've had about nine whales wash ashore over the last fifteen years.

The fin whale is the second largest living animal after the Blue whale and can swim up to 23 miles per hour, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

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