The Straits Times
www.straitstimes.com
Published on Oct 25, 2012
 

40 whales die in mass stranding on Indian island

 
 

NEW DELHI (AFP) - About 40 whales died in a mass stranding on the west coast of India's remote North Andaman island in the Bay of Bengal, wildlife officials said on Thursday.

"The short-finned pilot whales were found by fishermen who alerted us and investigations show it was a case of mass stranding," said Mr Ajai Saxena, a wildlife official in Port Blair, capital of the islands.

Mr Saxena said no previous mass stranding had been reported in the Andamans, but that it was a natural phenomenon that occurs when whales get disoriented and are unable to swim back into deep water.

Stranding is also thought to occur when a pod follows a sick or an injured whale into the shallows, experts say.