Business, Economics and Jobs

Beached whale freed by Indonesian rescuers


A whale shark, nearly six meters long, swims near the surface of the plankton-rich water of Donsol town, on May 24, 2007.


Scott Tuason

A giant sperm whale beached in Indonesia has been returned to sea after it was stranded in shallow waters off the coast of West Java, AFP reported.

According to the Associated Press, rescuers had been worried that the whale was slowly dying after efforts to rescue it were hampered by crowds of people attempting to get a look at the animal.

According to Pramudya Harzani from the Jakarta Animal Aid Network, the whale washed ashore on Wednesday near West Java's Krawang beach. Hundreds of onlookers posed for pictures with it.

According to the AFP the local residents each paid half a US dollar for rides close to the animal.

"We gradually pulled the whale into deeper waters with a tugboat. When it reached a 20-metre depth, we released it back into the sea," Benvika from the Jakarta Animal Aid Network told AFP.

The whale was scratched and bruised, apparently from people climbing on it, AFP reported.