A tourist has stumbled across a 10m long sperm whale beached off Tasmania’s Flinders Island while walking along the coast.
The 12 tonne mammal was spotted on North East River beach by Meree Barber on Monday, who posted updates of her find in the Whale Spotting Tasmania Facebook group.
“Whale still alive. We’re worried about its chances,” she posted.
“Waves still washing over skin, but is sinking in the sand.”
Parks and Wildlife Services (PWS) was notified and has since responded to help the whale, as have wildlife biologists from the Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment’s Marine Conservation Program (MCP).
In a statement, the department said local PWS staff and officers were monitoring the situation and “keeping the whale comfortable”.
“Specialist staff from DPIPWE’s MCP, including a vet, will shortly be on the island to assess the animal and response options,” a spokesperson said.
“Members of the public are thanked for reporting the whale and are reminded to keep their distance.”
Many other Facebook users commented on Ms Barber’s post, wishing the best for the whale.
“This is heart breaking,” one person wrote.
“So hope they can save it,” another commented.
“Praying for a good outcome for this beautiful whale,” a third posted.
“Hope there is help there now, we are all very worried,” another user said.