Dead whales spotted in Bonne Bay

Jamie Bennett
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A local whale expert said Monday there’s little that could have been done to help the four whales found dead in the ice at the mouth of Bonne Bay over the weekend.

Wayne Ledwell of Whale Release and Strandings suspects the whales were several blue whales recently spotted dead further out in the Gulf of St. Lawrence.

He said the whales were likely unfortunate victims of a particularly deadly season, given the abundance of ice in the bays around the island this year.

He said smaller whales and dolphins can be freed from ice given the proper conditions, but with whales as big as these the situation is typically hopeless.     

“We’ve done that with dolphins but ... with a blue whale, it’s pretty well next to impossible,” Ledwell said Monday from Portugal Cove-St. Phillip’s.

If the dead whales are blue whales as he suspects, Ledwell said the loss is significant.

“There’s only an estimated 250 of them left that we know of,” he said. “To lose that many up there in one spike, it’s a big thing.”

Geographic location: Bonne Bay, Portugal Cove

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