JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Garbage may be to blame for the death of a whale that beached itself in northeast Florida.
A necropsy by Georgia Aquarium staff found multiple plastic bags and braided fishing line in one of the whale's stomach chambers.
Matthew Denny, a field coordinator for the aquarium's field station in St. Johns County, says while pathology results are pending, garbage appears to be a contributing factor to the whale's death.
The young Cuvier's beaked whale died at a rescue facility after it was found Tuesday. It was 13-feet long and weighed about 1,400 pounds.
The whale may have ingested the plastic bags thinking that they were something edible.
Denny says it's common for stranded marine animals to have ingested or become tangled in debris.