The sperm whale spotted off the coast at Den Helder in a severely weakened state has died, marine animal organisation SOS Dolfijn said on Tuesday evening.
‘Its breathing became superficial and it kept tipping to one side,’ spokeswoman Jolanda Meerbeek told broadcaster NOS. ‘It tipped over for the last time around 18.00 hours.’
The whale was some 2.5 kilometres off the Dutch coast between Petten and Julianadorp when it died. The body will now be brought to shore for a post mortem examination.
According to sea life specialists at Ecomare, sperm whales move from north to south in the winter and are sometimes seen in the North Sea. However, it is odd for one to end up here in the summer, because this is not a period when they migrate along the North Sea, the organisation said on its website.
Last December, a 13.5 metre long sperm whale washed up on a beach in Domburg in the south of the country.
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