A fin whale with a deformed spine was seen off the coast of Cullera in eastern Spain, the country’s Guardia Civil said on March 6.
Oceanografic Valencia, a local aquarium, said the Guardia Civil and aquarium staff were mobilized on March 4 after receiving a report that the whale was entangled in a drift net.
Biologists and veterinarians determined that the 40-tonne male whale, measuring around 17 meters long, was not entangled but did have “a serious deviation” in its spine, Oceanografic Valencia said, according to a machine translation. The cause of the scoliosis was unknown, the aquarium said.
After a few hours, the whale headed back out to sea, Oceanografic Valencia said. It said on March 6 that the whale could reappear near the coast due to its condition.
Drone footage released by Guardia Civil shows the whale.