PICTURES

Dozens of whales beached in Florida's Everglades, 10 die

In this Tuesday, Dec 3, 2013 photo provided by the National Park Service, pilot whales are positioned in shallow waters just off a beach in a remote area of the western portion of Everglades National Park, Florida. Federal officials said some whales
In this Tuesday, Dec 3, 2013 photo provided by the National Park Service, pilot whales are positioned in shallow waters just off a beach in a remote area of the western portion of Everglades National Park, Florida. Federal officials said some whales have died. -- PHOTO: AP
Officials in boats monitor the scene where dozens of pilot whales are stranded in shallow water in a remote area of Florida's Everglades National Park, on Dec 4, 2013. -- PHOTO: AP
Officials in boats monitor the scene where dozens of pilot whales are stranded in shallow water in a remote area of Florida's Everglades National Park, on Dec 4, 2013. -- PHOTO: AP
A dead pilot whale lies near the beach in a remote area of Florida's Everglades National Park, on Dec 4, 2013. Federal officials say 10 of the dozens of whales stranded in Florida's Everglades National Park are now dead. -- PHOTO: AP
A dead pilot whale lies near the beach in a remote area of Florida's Everglades National Park, on Dec 4, 2013. Federal officials say 10 of the dozens of whales stranded in Florida's Everglades National Park are now dead. -- PHOTO: AP
People stand on the beach where two dead pilot whales lie in the water in a remote area of Florida's Everglades National Park, on Dec 4, 2013. -- PHOTO: AP
People stand on the beach where two dead pilot whales lie in the water in a remote area of Florida's Everglades National Park, on Dec 4, 2013. -- PHOTO: AP
A dead pilot whale lies near the beach in a remote area of Florida's Everglades National Park, on Dec 4, 2013. Federal officials say 10 of the dozens of whales stranded in Florida's Everglades National Park are now dead. -- PHOTO: AP
A dead pilot whale lies near the beach in a remote area of Florida's Everglades National Park, on Dec 4, 2013. Federal officials say 10 of the dozens of whales stranded in Florida's Everglades National Park are now dead. -- PHOTO: AP
In this Tuesday, on Dec 3, 2013, photo provided by the National Park Service, pilot whales are stranded on a beach in a remote area of the western portion of Everglades National Park, Fla. Ten whales have died and rescuers were trying to save dozens
In this Tuesday, on Dec 3, 2013, photo provided by the National Park Service, pilot whales are stranded on a beach in a remote area of the western portion of Everglades National Park, Fla. Ten whales have died and rescuers were trying to save dozens more that beached in Everglades National Park in southwest Florida, park and wildlife officials said on Wednesday. -- PHOTO: AP

MIAMI (REUTERS) - Ten whales have died and rescuers were trying to save dozens more that beached in Everglades National Park in southwest Florida, park and wildlife officials said on Wednesday.

Forty-one whales were swimming freely in shallow waters near shore as rescuers tried with little success to coax them out into deeper water. Wildlife officers euthanized four whales because they could not be saved, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, or NOAA, said.

NOAA said via Twitter that survival rates were typically low in such instances.

The whales were first sighted on Tuesday afternoon in a remote part of the park near the Gulf of Mexico, park spokeswoman Linda Friar said.

They were believed to be short-finned pilot whales, typically found in deep water in tropical and temperate areas.

Biologists will perform necropsies on the dead whales to try to determine why they were stranded, NOAA said.

"Pilot whales are common stranders. They tend to do this," Ms Friar said. When rescued, she said, "they tend to rebeach themselves."

"This area of the park is probably the most challenging for something like this. When the tide goes out, there's hundreds of yards of very shallow shoals," Friar said.

Short-finned pilot whales typically travel in pods of 25 to 30 animals.

Adults weigh 1,000 to 3,000kg, with females averaging 3.7 metres and males averaging 5.5 metres, according to NOAA.