337 Whales Beached in Largest Stranding Ever
The cause of the massive die-off, discovered in remote waters off Patagonia, Chile, is being investigated. Scientists say they are most likely sei whales, which are endangered.
Scientists made a startling discovery on an observation flight over a remote fjord in southern Chile’s Patagonia: 337 dead whales. That is the biggest single whale stranding event known to science.
Because of the remoteness of the area and the roughness of the seas, scientists have not been able to examine the whales directly, but aerial and satellite photography identified 305 bodies and 32 skeletons in an area between the Gulf of Penas and Puerto Natales, toward the southern tip of the continent.
Many of the remains were in advanced states of decay so it’s unclear what species they are, says lead scientist Carolina Simon Gutstein of the Universidad de Chile and Consejo de Monumentos Nacionales in Santiago. But based on