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Natural World

Very rare white humpback whale found washed up on beach

July 25, 2022 | Comment icon 4 comments



White whales are very rare. Image Credit: YouTube / Chris Jones
Experts have been attempting to determine what gave the unusual ocean-dwelling giant its distinct coloration.
Discovered by kayaker Peter Coles on a beach near Mallacoota in Victoria, Australia, the dead whale measures approximately 33 ft in length and is believed to be a juvenile female.

White whales are incredibly rare, meaning that any sightings of such a creature are noteworthy.

There had been concerns that this particular individual might be Migaloo - a famous white whale first sighted off the coast of Australia back in 1991 - however given its size and gender, it is highly unlikely that the newfound whale is the same animal.
While white coloration like this is usually down to a condition known as albinism, experts believe that this particular whale might have been afflicted with a different, though similar genetic condition known as leucism which impacts the production of melanin in individual cells.

As things stand, it remains unclear exactly how the whale died, however the most likely explanation is that it was struck by a boat.

"We were unable to see the upper side of the body, and if it has been hit by a ship, there'd probably be scarring and damage on the upper side of the body," said marine ecologist Wally Franklin.



Source: Live Science | Comments (4)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by Still Waters 25 days ago
Experts confirm white whale carcass on Victorian beach is not Migaloo “DELWP officers have examined images of the dead humpback whale at Mallacoota and have confirmed it is a sub-adult female,” Brick told AAP. “Migaloo is a male.” https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2022/jul/17/scientists-to-determine-if-white-whale-carcass-on-victorian-beach-is-well-known-migaloo
Comment icon #2 Posted by Myles 24 days ago
Surprised they do not have a tracker on Migaloo.
Comment icon #3 Posted by taniwha 22 days ago
Long live Migaloo!
Comment icon #4 Posted by Stiff 17 days ago
Probably attacked by a gang of black whales for being white and in the wrong hood. White Whales Matter. (Awaits the frenzy of wokists)


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