The corpse was removed from the beach on Friday evening and moved to the technical room of the local fire department. On Saturday morning it was transferred to the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of the University of Ghent, where an autopsy will be performed. It concerns a young female with a length of 3.59 meters and a weight of 510 kilograms.
This is only the seventh known case of a common beaked whale in Belgium, but already the second in 2020. The dolphins search for their food (mainly squid and squid) search the deep Atlantic waters. In principle, they have no business in the shallow North Sea off our coast. According to the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, the animal has become lost and has become seriously weakened by a nutritional deficiency. That is probably also the cause of death.
Additional injuries sustained in Nieuwpoort, where the animal swam between the stones lining the fence, are not expected to be the direct cause of death. However, they may have contributed to the further weakening of the animal. The autopsy should provide more clarity.