Officials reveal the suspected cause of death for two whales floating off the coast of New York


Two humpback whales that drifted dead off the coasts of New York and New Jersey earlier this week showed evidence of blunt force trauma, officials said.

One was a 47 foot male swimming off eastern Long Island and the other was a 28 foot female in Raritan Bay between New York and New Jersey. Although the two whales were both sighted for the first time on Wednesday, their “different degrees of decomposition” suggest their deaths were unrelated, the researchers said This was announced by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in a Facebook post on Friday.

NOAA also released the probable cause of death for each whale. The man died likely from “blunt force trauma” while the woman is suspected to have died from “blunt and sharp force trauma associated with a ship impact.”

The male was already “heavily decomposed” when the emergency services brought it ashore. However, the female was less decomposed and officers found the animal had bruises, cuts, multiple fractures and a severed fin.

The number of humpback whale deaths has been increasing since January 2016. CNN reported.

However, 40% of the dead whales appeared to have been harmed by “human interaction” by becoming entangled in fishing gear or being hit by ships. The rest of the whale carcasses were too badly decomposed for a cause of death to be confirmed, NOAA said.

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