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the mystery of obx whale strandings

The number of whale strandings on the OBX has doubled over the last 20 years.

Theories abound, but there is no certain explanation to the increase in whale strandings on Outer Banks beaches over the past 20 years. Jeff Hampton, writing for the Virginian Pilot takes a look at theories and guesses.

Strandings of whales on Outer Banks beaches are increasing, although no one is sure why.

Strandings of whales on Outer Banks beaches are increasing, although no one is sure why.

“A Cuvier’s beaked whale, fatally stricken with parasites, washed ashore in Nags Head in September and quickly drew a crowd.

Scientists from six research organizations clustered around the 18-foot carcass in boots, coveralls and rubber gloves. They bore gear to take measurements, draw blood and extract body parts within feet of the crashing waves and high tide coming to reclaim the whale’s remains.

It was an event.

It also was one of hundreds of such research opportunities for scientists interested in the seagoing mammals.”

For decades a stranded whale on an Outer Banks beach was a rare sight. Read the rest of this story on the Virginian Pilot.

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