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Rescued whales return to shore and their deaths

SIX whales believed to be part of a small pod that was rescued from a mass stranding in southwet Australia earlier this week were dying on the shore yesterday after re-beaching themselves, the government said.

Two of the long-finned pilot whales were already dead and the others appeared to be deteriorating rapidly, according to the Department of Environment and Conservation. The department was sending specialists and veterinarians to euthanize the ailing animals, which were spotted by airplane on a beach almost 6 kilometers from where a pod of 10 had been released a day earlier.

"We believe they are part of the rescued group from yesterday, so it's very disappointing" said operations officer John Carter. "We'll compare photos and measurements when we can get out there."

A pod of about 90 whales and five bottlenose dolphins became stranded in Western Australia state on Monday. Most died, but rescuers were able to push four dolphins and four whales back to sea and truck 10 whales overland to deeper waters on Tuesday.


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