The beluga stuck in the Seine is dead- Corriere.it

from Samuel Finetti

During the night the experts had lifted him from the river with a crane. He showed no signs of infection, he was ready to be transported to a salt water tank, but his health was now compromised.

A net, that was enough to get him out of the water. Raised not by human arms but from a crane: because the animal in question was not one of the numerous pike that populate the waters of the Seine, but the beluga that had been swimming along the great French river for five days stuck in a sluice about 125 meters by 25, seventy kilometers northwest of Paris. But the illusion of having saved him did not last long: only a few hours passed, the cetacean was killed due to its condition.

The specimen had been rescued last night, in an operation coordinated by the firefighters, veterinarians and experts from Sea Sheperd France. The latter then explained on Twitter that it was a male specimen, four meters long and weighing about 800 kilograms (well below the standard of the species), which had immediately been subjected to some veterinary examinations. Initially no signs of any infectious disease were found, but the biologists could not clarify why he had never eaten the fish that was thrown next to him after the first observations showed them. the state of weight loss.

After the rescue, the beluga was to be transported north, in a tub of salt water in the town of Ouistreham, in Normandy, aboard a refrigerated truck that had already been prepared for the delicate transfer. But in the end the long exposure to fresh water and to the pollution of the Seine was fatal. Sunday the president of Sea Shepard France, Lamya Essemlalihe had admitted that there was little hope of saving him except within 24-48 hours.

In May, an orca had died right in the Seine because it was undernourished. Now the experts can only wonder how a beluga could have been found in the French hinterland, 3,000 kilometers from its closest habitat (the Svalbard islands, in Norway). The French observatory Pelagis, which specializes in cetaceans, pointed out that it is the fourth case of a specimen of the species sighted in Europe at these latitudes: in 1948, a beluga had ended up in a fisherman’s nets along the Loire; in 1966, another had appeared in the German Rhine; and finally, in 2018, a specimen had risen to the surface at the mouth of the Thames.

August 10, 2022 (change August 10, 2022 | 11:55)

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