Sick 60-foot whale beached off Breezy Point shore has died

Posted at 10:43 AM, Dec 27, 2012
and last updated 2012-12-27 12:49:31-05

The sick and injured 60-foot whale that was discovered Wednesday morning beached on the shore of Queens has died, PIX11 News has learned from the Breezy Point Fire Department.

Wildlife experts said the outlook was grim for the female fin whale — the largest species of whale that normally weighs around 60 tons.  They said the mammal appeared emaciated and to weigh only between 20 to 30 tons.


The whale is hosed down as responders work to keep it alive. (Erica Pitzi/PIX11 News)

Volunteers and firefighters used buckets and a portable pump for hours to help keep the whale hydrated until the high tide came in to submerge it.

“It’s not looking good. The animal is really sick. At this point we are keeping our distance and letting nature take its course,” one expert told PIX11 News.

“We try to save them but a lot of the time they end up dying.”

The whale was initially discovered by Breezy Point resident Louis Bassolino and his family near Beach 216th Street and Palmer Drive.

“I couldn’t believe my eyes,” Bassolino said. “At first I thought it was an overturned boat but when I got closer I realized what I what it was.”

Breezy Point was recently in the news due to a devastating fire that broke out the night Superstorm Sandy hit and razed over 100 homes.

Beached whale

Crews tend to a beached whale in Breezy Point, Queens. (Mario Diaz/PIX11 News)