Mar 10,2009 00:00
FLORENCE, Ore. -- The fin whale carcass that washed ashore at Heceta Head State Scenic Viewpoint Sunday after being monitored in shallow water Friday was successfully buried at the same beach Monday.
Florence-based Leisure Excavating, working with state park staff, buried the 55-foot long, 30-ton carcass above the high tide line at the park in an 11-foot deep hole. The corpse will decompose naturally, officials said.
Marine Mammal Stranding Network biologist Jim Rice completed his work to attempt to determine the cause of death (a necropsy), but has not yet released any findings. The true cause may remain a mystery.
The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department's Whale Watching week arrives during spring break, from March 21-28. Volunteers will staff 26 watching stations from 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. each day. Gray whales are the species seen most often.