A whale shark washed ashore Candidasa Beach, Karangasem regency and was pronounced dead upon discovery, authorities said, making this the second time in recent months that a member of the species was found in Bali.
The Coastal and Marine Resources Management Center (BPSPL) in Denpasar said that the whale shark was found by local residents at 5am on Sunday. A team from the center was then dispatched to the location, wherein they proceeded to move the carcass to Bugbug Beach for burial, as Candidasa was determined to be too rocky to do so.
The whale shark, a female, was estimated to be around 5 meters long and weighed about 1 ton. Authorities said there was bleeding around the whale shark’s mouth due to suspected collision with coral reefs, and that it had died only a few hours before it was found.
Whale sharks are listed as endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
In September, a stranded whale shark was found washed ashore on Pekutatan Beach in Jembrana regency but died hours later, reportedly due to exhaustion.
Last month, the carcasses of two sperm whales were stranded near Mertasari Beach and on Mengiat Beach, the latter of which was found with its teeth already missing.