Science

Beluga whale makes waves as it swims up Thames near London

Beluga whale makes waves as it swims up Thames near London”

A Beluga whale swims in the Thames near Gravesend, east of London, Britain, September 26, 2016. It was reported to be feeding near a number of barges.

It says it is ready to provide help to the whale if asked to do so by other agencies.

It appears to have moved a few miles further west since yesterday.

Beluga whales, which are easily identifiable by their white markings, usually inhabit the cold Arctic waters off Greenland, Svalbard and the Barents Sea.

"In the summer of 2015 two were spotted off the Northumberland coast and one in Northern Ireland", he said.

At one stage, the whale nearly became beached near Battersea before members of the public jumped into the water and splashed it to try and force it back to the middle of the river.

"They are rarely seen in United Kingdom waters", said Sarah Dolman, a senior policy officer with Whale and Dolphin Conservation.

Throughout the day, Andrews continued to share whale updates and additional video footage, much to the delight of those following the story on social media.

The beluga's appearance brings back memories of the famous 2006 Thames whale.

The British Divers Marine Life Rescue warned the public to watch it from the shore, and not to get too close to the whale.

Beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas) normally live in Arctic and sub-Arctic waters, so any beluga in the Thames would be a long way from home.

"We would urge that the whale is given space and disturbance is kept to a minimum", he said.

Known as the "canary of the sea" due to their chirps, clicks and whistles, beluga whales can range from 13 ft to 20 ft in length and have distinctive round foreheads, known as "melons".



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