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Saturday, July 6, 2013


In the past I have posted about the whales that travel up the Queensland coast from Antarctica every year to give birth to their calves in the warmer waters of the north.
We get quite excited about them and a thriving tourist industry has developed around their visits to Hervey Bay each year.
 We're very protective of these wonderful creatures with many restrictions placed on humans approaching too close to them in their yearly journey.
The whales we see most often are Humpback whales - huge, harmless creatures some of which we have come to know quite well and even named ( Migaloo for instance - read about him !).
This week's news has been about a different type of whale-
the Orca or Killer Whale - a much smaller whale
Now these whales are fearsome predators of the sea that are not usually seen close to shore.
This week an Orca and it's young calf became stranded and died in the shallow waters of Hervey Bay.
Worse news was to follow as the rest of the pod were also in grave danger of becoming beached and stranded as they waited for the dead whales to join them on their journey north. 

Wildlife officers worked desperately to try to drive the pod out to sea

 but it looked like the whole pod were doomed as they refused to leave without the dead members
and became stranded on sand banks at low tide.
Wildlife Rangers worked tirelessly to protect them from the heat of the sun until the tide returned and the whales coud be refloated and guided into deeper water.
In desperation the dead calf was towed into deeper waters in the hope that the rest of the pod - numbering 5 - would follow but although they are in deeper water now it is feared they will return to the shallow water and become stranded again.
A team of rangers is closely monitoring the whales until they have cleared Hervey Bay and moved on to deeper water.


  1. Such a sad situation when whales beach themselves. I do hope the rest of the pod manage to swim out to deeper waters and continue their journey safely.

  2. How sad but how loyal the whales are to want to wait for the rest of their pod. I do hope they will eventually decide to go ahead and not keep waiting.

  3. It is very heartbreaking to hear these stories and I do hope they make it back out to sea. I guess it is the devotion of the pod family that makes them do this.