Stories tagged beaching

Jun
10
2008

Melon-headed whale
Melon-headed whaleCourtesy Minerals Management Service

Fifty-five melon-headed whales, a species tropical dolphin, have beached themselves in Madagascar and died. This is the first time these creatures are known to have visited the island.

Whales and dolphin periodically strand themselves on beaches, individually or in groups. No one knows why. They sometimes get "lost," swimming far inland up rivers. We have discussed such incidents on Science Buzz before: here and here and also here.

Dec
14
2005

Whales and dolphins occasionally run aground on beaches around the world. In Cape Cod, near Boston, animal rescue workers deal with some 200 incidents a year.

But something unusual happened on Friday, December 9. A powerful storm, combined with low tides, trapped large numbers of whales and dolphins. Altogether, 39 animals died.

Mass strandings occur when groups of these social creatures get caught in shallow areas when the tide is heading out. The December event was unusual not only for the large number of animals involved, but that two different species were beached in two different locations.