ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) – A fifth gray whale has been found dead along Alaska’s coast.
Julie Speegle of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says the latest whale was reported Tuesday in Chignik (CHIG-nik) Bay on the south side of the Alaska Peninsula.
Residents earlier saw the whale alive under the village dock. It was observed dead May 25 and towed away so it would not attract bears.
Speegle says NOAA Fisheries is attempting to secure the carcass, and if possible, conduct a necropsy to determine cause of death.
Dead gray whales have also been found this year near Clam Gulch, Kodiak Island, Cordova and Anchorage.
More than 60 dead gray whales have been found from Mexico to Alaska. NOAA Fisheries has declared the elevated rate an “unusual mortality event,” triggering a scientific investigation.