AVON, N.C. — A young, dead humpback whale washed onto an Outer Banks beach Monday.
Victoria Thayer, a spokeswoman for the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality, said the whale found in Avon was 10.3 meters long, or almost 34 feet, and had fishing gear around her tail.
Thayer said the gear was being sent to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Office of Law Enforcement (NOAA), which will try to figure out where it came from.
Thayer said the Cape Hatteras National Seashore, Jennette's Pier, North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission, Bonehenge Whale Center, UNC at Wilmington and the North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries all teamed up to respond to the stranding.
NOAA does keep track of "unusual" humpback whale deaths along the Atlantic coast. Virginia and North Carolina each have one whale death marked in 2022.
If you see a live stranded whale or a dead whale that has washed ashore, report it right away by contacting the Coast Guard or calling the Greater Atlantic Marine Mammal Stranding Hotline at (866) 755-6622.
Victoria G. Thayer (she/her/hers)