A day after 230 whales were found stranded on a beach in Australia's island state of Tasmania, most of them have died, officials said. They appear to be pilot whales, and while the agency working to rescue the whales originally said half were still alive, only 35 had survived by Thursday.
Most of the whales are stranded on Ocean Beach and others were reported in Macquarie Harbour, said Tasmania's Marine Conservation Program (MCP), which is responsible for monitoring and conservation of marine mammals and seabirds in the state.
The program, which is part of the Department of Natural Resources and Environment, advised the public to stay away from the area as rescue teams work to save the whales, noting that interfering with whales – even if they are deceased – is an offense, as they are a protect species.
Many roads are closed, as is the boat ramp at the harbor. Marine and Safety Tasmania also warned mariners about drifting whale carcasses in the water.