THE humpback whale that was euthanised and towed away from Independence Beach in Walvis Bay on Saturday has stranded again at Mile 4 in Swakopmund during Tuesday night.
Volunteers from the Namibia Dolphin Project and the community of Walvis Bay, along with several officials from different state departments, had their hands full while they attempted to refloat the whale when it first stranded in Walvis Bay last week Wednesday. When all attempts to save the whale and get it back to the open ocean failed, a decision was taken to euthanise it and to tow it around Pelican Point southwards towards Sandwich Harbour where nature could take its course.
The dead whale did not strand on the beach south of the peninsula as planned. Instead, wave action and sea currents caused it to drift about 40 kilometres northwards towards Swakopmund where it stranded again.
Residents of Mile 4 woke up to the bloated whale carcass on the shoreline in front of the houses early on Wednesday morning. The bloated carcass was also spotted in the sea from the old iron jetty in Swakopmund on Tuesday afternoon while it drifted northwards in prevailing sea currents.
Journalist and resident of the Mile 4 suburb, Donna Collins, said besides the fact that the whale carcass is bloated, it is still very much intact.
She said news of the dead whale’s presence at the Mile 4 public beach has already travelled far and wide, with streams of curious onlookers gathering around the carcass.
“Some came to marvel at this glorious miracle of nature and others to pose for selfies with the dead whale,” she said.
In the meantime, the Swakopmund Municipality’s health department has been notified about the stranding and will now have to deal with the potential health hazard the decomposing whale carcass presents to local residents.