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BEACHED

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Pilot whale sea-pen with good kind caring people at work
On Thursday May 5, a pod of 20 Pilot whales stranded themselves off  Cudjoe Key, FL which is one of the Lower Florida Keys.  The Keys stretch from Homestead FL to Key West, FL and are divided into three sections Upper, Middle and Lower.  The stranding point is about 10 miles out in shallow water and it is not really understood by marine scientists why this occurs.   Since that time a large group of volunteers have been trying very hard to save them, some of whom have spent over 6 hours in the water through last night.  A makeshift sea pen was built about 15 miles from Key West and 6 whales were transported there, it is hoped they will be returned to the sea this weekend.  Later a search team found 2 more whales alive and they too were transported to the sea pen.  Unfortunately that search also turned up 12 dead Pilot whales and one of the live whales a female was in such pain she had to be euthanized.


The last large stranding we had was in 2003 when 28 Pilot whales came ashore off Big Pine Key which is 15 miles away from the present stranding point.  That also was a Spring stranding, while there may be some connection it is not really understood why whales beach themselves.


Cudjoe Key is in Monroe County, FL and the County Mayor herself turned up in a wet-suit to help out.  Several U.S.Navy Seabees came from Boca Chica Naval Air Station, FL to help as well.  A six-person team came down from SeaWorld, Orlando, FL on Friday evening to assist.


This area is the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary, in addition to the volunteers participants assisting are, the Marine Mammal Conservancy, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), and the United States Coast Guard (USCG).



Pilot whale
 Good Watch.

Please remember the seafarers held captive by pirates off Somalia - let us work with maritime interests and others to free them.

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