An 18-foot minke whale ran aground on a sandbar in the Amazon jungle some 1,000 miles from the ocean, Brazilian media reported Friday. Globo television broadcast images of dozens of people gathered along the Tapajos River splashing water on the animal, whose back and dorsal fin were exposed to the hot Amazon sun. Sea creatures rarely venture so far into fresh water.
Oh, and this:
The whale is not the only animal to get lost in Brazil this week.
On Thursday a young reptile - which was 1.5m long - turned up at a popular beach in Rio de Janeiro and had to be rescued by firemen.
They had been searching for the alligator for some time and had closed Barra beach, but despite this some swimmers insisted on entering the water.
The caiman, or yellow stomach alligator as it is known in Brazil, was taken to a local zoo for treatment for a broken leg.
This endangered species is normally found in freshwater swamps and marshes, and the fire service in Rio said it was the first time they had rescued one from the sea.
The world is all topsy turvy!
The Minke whale story was definitely a surprise to me, although it does recall a bit of RU lore. Apparently there once was a Right Whale that died along the Raritan, and legend has it that it was taken to "Passion Puddle" on the Cook/Douglass campus to have its flesh and muscle removed. Whether that part is true or not, the bones eventually wound up at the Rutgers geology museum, but ultimately were sent to Yale. Unfortunately, the bones were never prepped properly and were so greasy that they were thrown out, the story now having slipped into obscurity. Cetaceans still do show up along the Ratian, though; just last year a bottlenose dolphin made it's way up to New Brunswick before being rescued.