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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Whale carcass removed from beach

Advertiser Staff

Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser

Marine conservation specialist David Nichols looks over the carcass of the whale on Punaluu Beach this morning.

BRUCE ASATO | The Honolulu Advertiser

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Workers used an excavator and a front-end loader to remove a whale carcass from Punaluu Beach Park this morning before it was trucked to Kualoa Ranch for burial.

About a dozen people looked on as the operation got under way.
Once the dead whale was dropped into the truck, the odor emanating from the decomposing carcass was overpowering.
David Nichols, a marine conservation specialist with the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, oversaw the removal by Cates International, a private company.
He estimated the removal cost at about $5,000.
The 25-foot-long, 10- to 15-ton carcass is possibly a juvenile humpback, DLNR spokeswoman Deborah Ward had said.
An examination found evidence of dorsal scarring, suggesting the whale had been entangled at one time.
The carcass was first reported Thursday night about 100 yards offshore. A survey Friday morning by a Coast Guard helicopter saw no evidence of sharks and no signs of entangling lines.