Nearly 200 Whales Stranded on New Zealand Beach
Hordes of rescuers scramble to try to push huge animals back into deeper waters.
Rescuers and volunteers were scrambling on Friday to save nearly 200 pilot whales that were stranded on New Zealand's South Island. At least two dozen of the whales were reported dead, and more than 80 people descended on the beach near the shallow waters of Farewell Spit to begin the difficult task of moving survivors back into the water.
The area on the South Island's northwest corner is an especially treacherous one for pilot whales because the shallow waters there can be confusing to navigate, New Zealand's Department of Conservation reported. Large strandings of pilot whales happen occasionally on New Zealand during the region's summer.
Trevor Spradlin, a marine mammal biologist with the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration,