A juvenile Orca Whale has been successfully released back into the ocean after it was discovered beached on the Robberg Beach shores in Plettenberg Bay, Western Cape, the National Sea Rescue Institute said on Saturday.
NSRI crew were alerted of the whale also described a “Killer Whale” on Friday night around 20:30, spokesperson Craig Lambinon said.
“…On arrival on the scene an Orca whale, believed to be a juvenile, approximately six metres in length, was found on the beach and members of the public were assisting to throw water on [it].”
The Orca was believed to be the same whale that had been seen in Plettenberg Bay, swimming close inshore, over the past few days, Lambinon said.
Buckets of water were used to keep the whale wet by members of the NSRI as well as concerned members of the public.
A veterinarian arrived on the scene and efforts to get the whale back into the water began, but they were short-lived when the whale re-beached.
“Efforts were hampered by the Spring low tide,” Lambinon said.
“The rescue crew were then able to… get the whale into deeper water and they then swum with the whale, holding onto the whale, to coax the whale into deeper water.”
In an effort to discourage re-beaching, a line was formed in the water, by the crew, as the whale continued to try to head back to the beach.
The efforts proved to be successful and the whale returned to the ocean.
The beach was monitored on Friday night and on Saturday morning, Lambinon said.
“The whale has been seen swimming along the beach front and a member of the public has also reported seeing the whale feeding.
“We are cautiously optimistic that the efforts are successful and we must thank the public members who joined in the efforts last night,” Lambinon said.
Lifeguards and NSRI crew members would continue to monitor the beach and keep a lookout for the whale.