Juvenile sperm whale stranded on Maryland beach dies, experts say

A whale stranded along the shoreline of a Maryland beach has died, officials say.

The National Aquarium in Baltimore sent a small team Sunday morning to help the whale, after it was reported about 6:45 a.m., and confirmed at about 1:30 p.m. that the juvenile sperm whale was dead, Delmarva Now reported.

Experts believe the whale was extremely underweight, according to Delmarva Now.

The whale was near 114th street in Ocean City, police tweeted, which is about 150 miles from Baltimore.

People were gathered around the whale and trying to push it back into the ocean before experts arrived, Delmarva Now reported.

”Whenever you see an animal like this in distress, the best thing you can do is give it space and immediately contact a trained wildlife first responder,” the aquarium said in a statement published by WJLA.

The whale was in front of High Point South Condominium, which posted a picture on Facebook.

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources and the Ocean City Police Department will remove the whale from the beach, the aquarium said, according to WJLA, and the DNR will do an autopsy to determine why it was stranded.

“As you can imagine, this has been a challenging day for not only Aquarium responders and partners, but all those on the beach throughout the morning,” the statement said, according to WJLA. “We thank everyone for their support and concern.”

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Bailey Aldridge is a reporter covering real-time news in North and South Carolina. She has a degree in journalism from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.