Hunstanton sperm whale could be incinerated this week

Latest images of Whale on Huntstanton beach. ANL-160126-211650009

Latest images of Whale on Huntstanton beach. ANL-160126-211650009

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The sperm whale which washed up on Hunstanton beach could be taken away for incineration later this week.

West Norfolk Council is holding talks with contractors to remove the whale, which washed up on Friday last week.

A council statement says: “The arrangements have taken time to make due to the location of the carcass, and its huge size and weight, and rapidly advancing state of decomposition.

“A number of contractors will be involved in the operation, and once the arrangements have been finalised, it is likely that the carcass will be cut into sections in situ, and then transported to a licensed animal incineration facility out of the county.

“If arrangements can be finalised quickly, the removal is likely to take place before the end of the week. Access to the carcass has become easier, as the winds and tides have shifted it to a different position on the beach.”

The whale is one of five which have beached in Hunstanton, Skegness and Wainfleet.

No post-mortem examination of the whale has taken place, but samples have been taken for analysis, including the removal of the whale’s lower jaw.

The council is urging people to keep a distance from the 45ft body.

The statement adds: “Whilst there is no evidence that members of the public have removed, or attempted to remove, parts of the whale, people should note that if they do so, or attempt to do so, they may be committing a criminal offence.

“The health advice previously issued by the borough council still stands, and everyone is strongly urged to keep their distance from the carcass. It is in an advanced state of decomposition; which may be distressing to see, particularly for children.”