A beaked whale which was found dead on a beach in the Wadden island of Texel on Friday could be one of three that got stuck in shallow water on the coast of Zandvoort earlier this summer, Wadden centre Ecomare has said.
Beachgoers were able to return the animals to sea, but not before a woman tried to ride one of the whales, which may have made its precarious situation worse.
The woman has since handed herself in to police. It is not yet clear if her actions will lead to a prosecution.
The animal, a four metre-long female which had been dead for some days, was found by a walker. The whale will be moved to the veterinary department of Utrecht University where scientists will try to find out more about her state of health just before she died.
Beaked whales hunt at dept and often get into trouble in the relatively shallow waters of the North Sea. The undulating sea floor also interferes with their biosonar system, which enables them to locate prey, leading to beachings, such as at Zandvoort and, around the same time, at Westduine in Belgium.
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