Lifeless humpback whale appears on beach in Mazatlan


The finding of the lifeless humpback whale occurred on a beach on Isla de la Piedra, in Mazatlan, Sinaloa; The causes of his death are unknown.

A lifeless humpback whale was found on a beach on Isla de la Piedra, in Mazatlan, on December 26, 2019. It is a male of approximately 16 meters in length that presented a state of decomposition.

The finding was made on land that corresponds to the Ejido Isla de la Piedra, about 50 meters away from the perimeter fence of the Estrella de Mar tourism development.

Eréndira González Diego, biologist responsible for the turtle sanctuary of Estrella del Mar, confirmed that the body was found during one of the tours of the staff in charge and that she herself was responsible for reporting it immediately to the local delegation of the Federal Attorney’s Office of Environmental Protection (Profepa).

Inspectors of the dependency went that same day in the afternoon to verify the finding and the conditions of the whale. In turn, that instance requested the support of the Directorate of Ecology and the Municipal Environment to bury it on the beach, since it was not possible to move it due to its weight and state.

The discovery of the lifeless whale occurred on December 26 on Isla de la Piedra, Mazatlan. Photo: Eréndira González.

Finally, the waves and the tides again exposed the body of the humpback whale, without identifying the causes of death.

González Diego explained that the marine mammal had skin shedding, but its fins and tail were still complete.

First case of the season

The event was also reported to the Mazatlan Marine Mammal Strand Network. Oceanologist Oscar Guzón, a member of the organization, reported separately that this is the first case of stranding that is reported in the current season of humpback whale sightings, which, in the case of Mazatlan, began on December 8, 2019 and concludes on March 31, 2020.