It was a sad sight on Oahu’s North Shore Tuesday morning.
A dead baby whale was found on the rocks near Turtle Bay.
The intent was to tow the carcass back to Haleiwa Harbor, where it would be loaded on a truck.
In the past, scientists have studied the remains to discover the cause of death.
In this case, in the interest of public safety, the carcass was cut loose in deep water miles off shore.
“But with the fact that there are sharks on the whale right now as they’re towing it, we decided, state and federal government, decided it wasn’t a good idea to bring it in shore so it has to be out to sea,” said David Schofield, NOAA.
NOAA says it was apparently a “failure to thrive” that caused the baby whale to die.
One alarming thing NOAA pointed out is that this is the fifth baby humpback to die this year, compared to only one or two total in any other given year.