SNIPE POINT, Fla. - Necropsies performed on the 11 whales found dead in the Florida Keys show that they were emaciated and suffering from malnutrition.
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration stranding coordinator Blair Mase said Monday that the whales' empty bellies could be a result of disease or of being out of the deep, cooler waters that form their natural habitat.
A fisherman found the 11 whales lying near one another Sunday in Snipe Point, on an island chain northwest of Key West.
The whales are believed to be part of a pod of 51 whales originally found stranded on a remote Everglades beach last Tuesday. Six other whales were found dead Wednesday, and four more had to be euthanized. Another was found dead Thursday.
Twenty-nine whales remain unaccounted for.
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