Investigation Launched After 14 Dead Sperm Whales Washed Up On Australian Beach

Authorities in Australia have launched an investigation after 14 young sperm whales were found beached on an island off the southeastern coast, officials said on Tuesday.

One of the dead sperm whales washed up on King Island
One of the dead sperm whales washed up on King Island

The dead whales were found on Monday afternoon on King Island, part of the state of Tasmania in the Bass Strait between Tasmania's northern coast and Melbourne, the state Department of Natural Resources and Environment confirmed in a statement.

The government dispatched a Marine Conservation Program team to the scene on Tuesday and they have been conducting autopsies in an attempt to determine their cause of death.

The photographs released by the department showed the dead whales on their sides in shallow water on the shore of the island.

Aerial surveys were being planned to try and determine whether there were any other whales in the area.

The Environment Department said: "While further inquiries are yet to be carried out, it is possible the whales were part of the same bachelor pod - a group of younger male sperm whales associating together after leaving the maternal group."

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