Beached whale has died off coast of Texas

GALVESTON, TX -- A whale stranded on a beach in Galveston, Texas, has died, according to a rescue organization that followed the case since the animal was spotted Tuesday morning.

Heidi Whitehead, of the Texas Marine Mammal Stranding Network, said the whale was likely very ill given that it was that close to shore and its health had declined quickly. It appeared to be stranded on a sandbar or between sandbars.

There's no word on the gender of the animal or the species, but it appears to be 30 to 40 feet long. The whale is about 50 yards from the shore.

Going forward, authorities say they plan to pull the whale to shore using a rope around its tail, which is the strongest part, and keep the animal on the beach overnight. Security is being coordinated to keep people away from the dead animal.

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Raw video: Whale stranded on West Beach, Galveston

Whitehead told Eyewitness News that they were waiting to help the animal because it was too far out. They were waiting for the tide to move the animal closer.

Whitehead had said prior to the whale's death that it would likely be euthanized.
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