Sperm whale body stuns, draws crowd in Uruguay

A municipal worker talks on a mobile phone next to a whale on Jan 12, 2014 as its body is being removed from the water a day after appearing at the shore of Carrasco beach in Montevideo, Uruguay. Authorities in Uruguay on Sunday recovered the body of
A municipal worker talks on a mobile phone next to a whale on Jan 12, 2014 as its body is being removed from the water a day after appearing at the shore of Carrasco beach in Montevideo, Uruguay. Authorities in Uruguay on Sunday recovered the body of a 16-meter sperm whale, normally at home in deep waters, after it beached near the capital. -- PHOTO: AFP

MONTEVIDEO (AFP) - Authorities in Uruguay on Sunday recovered the body of a 16-meter sperm whale, normally at home in deep waters, after it beached near the capital.

Using a crane, the authorities moved the animal from the shallow waters onto the beach off Carrasco, an upscale town just next to Montevideo.

"The body will remain on the beach until Monday," said navy spokesman Gaston Jaunsolo.

Traffic tied up in the area as curious locals stopped to watch and catch a glimpse of the unusual sight.

"I don't ever recall another sighting of a sperm whale here; they are from very deep waters," Mr Rodrigo Garcia, from the whale protection organisation, said of the adult male that apparently beached on Saturday.

Authorities were expected to investigate the cause of death.

Mr Garcia said that the animal did not appear to have any apparent external injuries, and that like dolphins they are highly sensitive to sound.

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