The large whale, suspected to be either a Bryde’s or Omura’s, was trapped on the sandy beach of Luli Island, a popular island spot in the said bay in Barangay Sta. Lourdes.
Vivian Obligar-Soriano, senior ecosystems management specialist of the Community Environment and Natural Resources Office, said joint teams from the PNP-Maritime Special Operations Unit, Philippine Coast Guard, local Department of Environment and Natural Resources and Palawan Council for Sustainable Development Staff safely herded the whale back to a deeper part of the waters of the bay shortly before 2:30 p.m.
“We successfully released it back to the deeper part of the bay, and we didn’t see it again. We requested these authorities to keep a close watch on the marine mammal so, that when it comes back we can do something,” Soriano told the Philippine News Agency (PNA).
The shallow area on Luli Island, where it was shoved by waves and trapped, was cordoned off to keep away people from the place during the rescue.
She added that the wounds that were spotted on the tail of the whale were not serious and that it was strong enough to swim away after its rescue.
“Its wounds were superficial; it probably got them when its tail hit the sands and some rocks on the island due to low-tide,” she said, adding they are now clarifying the species of the whale to the Marine Wildlife Watch of the Philippines.
The latest stranding was the fifth recorded in Palawan this year. The first one said to be a 7-footer pygmy sperm whale was stranded in the northern municipality of Roxas in April. –PNA