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Dead minke whale washes ashore in Scituate

A dead minke whale washed up to shore inScituate Monday.New England Aquarium

A dead minke whale washed ashore in Scituate on Monday afternoon after sharks fed on its carcass, the New England Aquarium said.

The 22-foot-long whale was found dead in the waters off Humarock, a village in Scituate, the New England Aquarium said in a statement. The aquarium’s marine animal rescue team responded to the scene.

“[The whale] had probably died within the past couple of days and has been significantly scavenged by sharks. The amount of tissue eaten from the carcass precluded the opportunity to do a full necropsy,” the statement said.

The skin on the whale’s fins and back was in good condition, the aquarium said.

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“No marine gear or evidence of any other human interaction were seen. Unlike many whale carcasses that wash ashore, this minke whale had not been first spotted floating at sea,” the statement said.

Scituate officials disposed of the “sub-adult” whale carcass Tuesday morning, the aquarium said.

This is the second time in less than two weeks that sharks fed on a minke whale carcass on the South Shore, the aquarium said. Sharks were spotted feeding on a dead minke whale at Duxbury Beach Sept. 1.

“White sharks prefer to prey upon seals, but the opportunity to feed upon a calorie-rich whale carcass is too good to pass up,” the statement said.


Alyssa Lukpat can be reached at alyssa.lukpat@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @AlyssaLukpat.