35 pilot whales moving in deeper Everglades water, officials say

National Park Rangers and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration specialists search the ocean for stranded pilot whales on Thursday in the Everglades National Park. Wildlife officials said they were prepared Thursday to use sound and other herding techniques to try to save pilot whales who were in dangerously shallow water Tuesday and Wednesday, but the 35 surviving whales were moving to deeper water on their own Thursday.

Associated Press

National Park Rangers and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration specialists search the ocean for stranded pilot whales on Thursday in the Everglades National Park. Wildlife officials said they were prepared Thursday to use sound and other herding techniques to try to save pilot whales who were in dangerously shallow water Tuesday and Wednesday, but the 35 surviving whales were moving to deeper water on their own Thursday.

EVERGLADES NATIONAL PARK

35 whales move to deeper water

Pods of 35 pilot whales slowly swam Thursday into deeper water off Florida's southwest coast, raising optimism that the strandings of whales on Everglades National Park beaches may soon end on a positive note.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration fisheries official Blair Mase said midafternoon Thursday that the three whale pods were 9 miles north of their original location and moving offshore. They were in 18 feet of water about 6 miles offshore, still several miles from the 900- to 1,000-foot depths they usually call home, Mase said.

"They are in deeper water, and they are getting closer to their normal home range," Mase said. "Even though we are hopeful, this situation could go either way. There is a chance they could come back inshore again."

Times wires

35 pilot whales moving in deeper Everglades water, officials say 12/05/13 [Last modified: Thursday, December 5, 2013 9:52pm]

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