HomeOutdoorsNewsEndangered Humpback Whale’s 311-Pound Flipper to Be Displayed in North Carolina

Endangered Humpback Whale’s 311-Pound Flipper to Be Displayed in North Carolina

by Emily Morgan
Endangered Humpback Whale Flipper Displayed North Carolina
Photo by: Tim Melling

It’s not been a great start to 2023 for humpack whales in North Carolina. In less than a month, two endangered humpback whales were found dead in one of the state’s barrier islands.

However, in the latest instance, officials saved parts of the 31-foot-long female whale and have since put them on display. The most recent discovery was made on Dec. 28 on North Core Banks, located inside the Cape Lookout National Seashore in North Carolina.

At this time, officials have not yet released a cause of death. However, they later performed a necropsy and took samples from the deceased whale.

However, Cape Lookout National Seashore officials were granted permission to take parts from the whale to use for educational purposes— something officials at the National Seashore rarely do.

“A NC Marine Mammal Stranding Network … team assisted the park in collecting one of the whale’s front flippers and a 4-foot-long section of baleen from the whale’s mouth,” the park later reported.

According to officials, “The whale parts will “be processed and eventually used in an exhibit at the Harkers Island Visitor Center.”

They added: “The team also assisted the park in collecting one of the whale’s front flippers and a 4-foot-long section of baleen from the whale’s mouth.”

An image shared by the park on its Facebook account also shows a park biologist lying next to the flipper to show its length. According to officials, the whale’s flipper was 13 feet long and weighed 311 pounds.

This occasion marks the second humpback whale found at a beach in North Carolina in December.

New Jersey officials determine humpback whale most likely died from being struck by vessel

On Dec. 5, someone found a 30-foot humpback whale. It was beached on Hatteras Island at Cape Hatteras National Seashore, just north of Cape Lookout. Officials performed a necropsy on the marine mammal but didn’t release a cause of death.

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, all humpback whales are classified as endangered if they’re in U.S. waters. The most common causes of death happen when they get entangled in fishing gear or get hit by boats.

They can weigh up to 40 tons and reach 60 feet long. As for life span, they can live up to 90 years.

Up north, a necropsy team of more than three dozen people has concluded that a deceased whale found on the Jersey Shore was most likely struck by a vessel. It was also the seventh dead whale found in the New York-New Jersey region in the past month.

According to the Marine Mammal Stranding Center in Brigantine, the deceased whale measured 32 feet 7 inches long. It also weighed around a whopping 12 tons.

Outsider.com