In Wellington, New Zealand pilot whales were stranded on the beach. At this time thirty-six of the whales have perished and another forty are still in danger. According to the Department of Conservation the pilot whales became stranded on Monday at South Island on Farewell Spit. Volunteers and staff from the conservation department have managed to successfully re-float seventeen whales but there are still six of the whales that are not accounted for. The seventeen whales rescued have made it out to the deeper water.
The forty pilot whales that are still in danger were trying to swim in the shallow water but when the tide went out that evening on Tuesday the whales found themselves stranded once again. The volunteers are trying to make sure the whales are kept wet and cool until it got dark and the high tide came in sometime in the night.
This type of whale can grow to approximately twenty feet and it is common during the summer in New Zealand to see large strandings of these pilot whales. Where the whales were stranded this time at Farewell Spit is nothing more than a trap for these pilot whales. The reason is that the shallow waters in this area the pilot whales appear to be confused. When this happens, their navigation ability becomes diminished.