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Residents team with medics to save young orca stranded on beach


British Divers Marine Life Rescue

SCOTLAND, U.K. (WFLA) — A young orca was rescued from the beach last week on the Orkney Islands in Scotland.

Officials with the British Divers Marine Life Rescue said residents saw the animal lying in the surf from their house and called authorities. Upon arrival, medics determined that it was in fact a young, healthy killer whale.

The orca was believed to be approximately 11 feet long and about 3 to 4 years old.

After putting a word out to local residents for more manpower, the team immediately began setting the animal upright to aid its breathing and make sure the blowhole was out of the water.

As the tide came in more, medics were able to rotate the dolphin to face the sea and slowly move a stretcher under it.

After about an hour of repositioning, the orca finally “took matters into its own fins” and swam off. It rolled a couple times, submerged, and continued straight out away from the beach, not looking back.

The BDMLR said it’s incredibly rare for and orca to get stranded on the shore. They believe this was the first successful refloat of an orca by their team in the UK.


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