28 October 2020,   19:14
Rescuers battling to save 180 whales stranded off Australian coast

Rescuers were trying to refloat hundreds of whales stranded on a sandbar off the remote west coast of the Australian island of Tasmania on Tuesday, hoping to end one of the country’s worst beaching events.

Government scientists estimated about 90 of about 270 pilot whales trapped in shallow water had died since the stranding was reported a day earlier.

Aerial footage showed large numbers of the animals largely prone on a wide sandbar at Macquarie Harbour, about 200 km northwest of the state capital Hobart, while others floundered in slightly deeper water.

“We’ve got animals that are semi-buoyant so it probably won’t take too much to refloat those animals closer to the deeper water, and will involve just a bit of grunt from specialised crew in the water”, - Kris Carlyon, a wildlife biologist said.