DALY CITY (KRON)—Dozens of scientists performing a necropsy on the blue whale carcass that washed ashore in Daly City Wednesday afternoon found the whale had multiple skull fractures, according to Marine Mammal Center officials.
The cause of death has not yet been determined, but the skull fractures indicate blunt force trauma.
The whale has been determined as a male blue whale measuring about 65 feet.
“This was a rare opportunity to examine an endangered blue whale, the largest animal on earth, and acquire solid base line information to share with our scientific partners,” Marine Mammal Center researcher Barbie Halaska said this evening in a statement.
The scientists conducting the necropsy are from the Marine Mammal Center, the California Academy of Sciences, the Noyo Center and University of California, Davis,
They will all be at the Westmoor Beach near Daisaku Ikeda Canyon where the carcass is.
“It’s somewhat degraded in terms of its overall body condition,” said Marine Mammal Center spokesman Giancarlo Rulli.
Scientists will be able to perform a full necropsy, Rulli said.
The blue whale is an endangered species and the largest on earth, he said.
The carcass was found around 12:30 p.m. Wednesday a quarter mile from the shore of the Daly City beach, Rulli said.
The Marine Mammal Center sent a team member to the beach Wednesday afternoon.
They decided to hold off on the necropsy exam because there were only a few hours left of daylight.