Authorities are struggling with the colossal task of burying a humpback whale, estimated to weigh 35 tonnes, that washed up dead five days ago on a beach in La Paz, Baja California Sur.
Marine biologists with the federal environmental protection agency and coast guard officials arrived at El Mogote Beach Thursday to bury the dead animal but a front-end loader brought along to carry out the task was deemed insufficient for the job.
“They’re coming back … with two backhoes,” said a local fisherman who mentioned that local security officers also showed up at the scene and failed to make any progress.
Local residents and fishermen have been complaining about the odor the dead whale has been giving off since it washed up at low tide on Sunday, already in a state of decomposition. It has remained ever since at the water’s edge, and locals are demanding that authorities find a way to bury the 20-meter-long animal as soon as possible.
Francisco Gómez, director of the Museum of the Whale in La Paz, told Más Noticias BCS that the whale must be removed soon to avoid blood and body oils from the whale contaminating the shoreline.
The whale is believed to have lost its way and then died while still in the ocean, eventually being pulled onto the beach by tidal currents.