Work under way to remove dead 40ft whale from Clacton beach
Abiriga John Angwe
May. 30, 2020
Work is under way to remove a dead whale washed up on a beach on the Essex coast.
The 40ft (12m)-long creature, believed to be a fin whale, was first reported in shallow water close to the sand near Clacton, at about 05:30 BST on Friday.
Part of the area has been cordoned off while the recovery operation takes place.
A Tendring District Council spokesman said it was hoped the whale would be removed by the end of Saturday.
People had been warned by police to stay away from the area due to health concerns, after the carcass was spotted at Holland-on-Sea .
"Initially the beach had been closed off as far down as Jaywick Sands, as a precaution," said the council spokesman.
"This cordon has now been significantly reduced.
"We understand people may be interested and want to see the whale for themselves or watch the clearance work - we would remind people to observe social distancing and to avoid crowded areas as we are still in the Covid-19 pandemic."
Image copyright @Bigbluecleanup Image caption The whale was seen early on Friday morning
Staff from British Divers Marine Life Rescue, who went to the scene, said fin whales, which are the second largest animal on the planet, can grow to about 70ft (21m), so it was likely to be a juvenile.
It is not yet clear how the mammal died and is thought a similar-sized whale has not washed up along that stretch of coast in more than 20 years.
Rob Deaville, from Zoological Society of London's Cetacean Strandings Investigation Programme, said it was "investigating whether it may be possible to collect any samples" to help future research.
Image copyright PA Media Image caption People gathered on Friday to see the whale on the beach
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