A team from the Cetacean Strandings Investigation Programme at ZSL examine the body of a 12 metre sperm whale, which was stranded in the Thames.
Working through the night at Peel Ports London Medway, CSIP investigators were able to carry out a dissection and collect a range of tissue samples for further analysis. The animal, which died in the Swale, Kent, over the weekend, showed no evidence of recent feeding.
The stomachs were empty and the team recorded bile staining through much of the intestinal tract. The complete lack of squid beaks (sperm whales’ primary prey) suggests that the animal may have been in the southern North Sea for some time. No ingested marine debris/plastics were found.