Went out to Bean Hollow State Beach yesterday to see a blue whale
(Balaenoptera musculus) that washed up recently. The size of the whale is 85 feet and impressive to stand next to, although the smell was intense as you could imaging. Joe Cordero from NMFS says clues and animal condition are consistent with a boat strike–pretty sad. To make the situation worse, the whale was pregnant and her aborted fetus was washed up on some neighboring rocks (4th picture in). I did see Eric Cheng from WetPixel.com (5th picture in) also there checking out the whale. An awkward place for a social gathering, but it was good to see him.
Part of the pelvic area was missing from the whale because some biologists recently did a partial necropsy on her. Click HERE to see some of that video. Reminds me of college actually, when I was volunteering for the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History. I carved up a couple of whales because the guy I was working for wanted the skeleton. Of course, the whales I worked with were not as pretty as this one. Picture millions of maggots. Ugh!