Scots haul away dead whale rather than blow it up

Scottish officials had planned to use dynamite to blow up the 47 ft. carcass of a dead sperm whale but later decided that the 30-ton leviathan would be hauled away and dumped in a local “rubbish tip” (disposal site). Prior to the whale’s death, it had become entangled in the anchor rope of a 19 ft. yacht occupied by Donald Morrison, 61. For nearly two hours, Morrison fought to untangle the rope from the whale, all while his small craft was being towed toward shore and repeatedly thrashed by the apparently suicidal whale. An exact cause of death for the whale had not yet been determined.


Mar 7 2006

A COUNCIL decided not to blow up the rotting carcass of a 47ft whale that nearly sunk a yacht.

Instead, Western Isles Council hired a low-loader lorry to transport the creature’s 30-ton body from rocks at Scarista on Harris.

The truck carried the body of the sperm whale to a tip on the outskirts of Stornoway on neighbouring Lewis.

A dozen men were required for the huge operation and the council are facing a £5000 bill.

But, because of the whale’s size, the Executive have agreed to help meet the costs.
The whale was moved to the Bennadrove landfill site yesterday.

Before it died, fisherman Donald Morrison had a lucky escape with the whale when he woke up to loud banging and found his yacht being tossed about the sea.

He saw the whale pulling him towards shallow water off the island of Taransay.

It took him nearly two hours to free the ropes from the frantic pull of the whale.

Donald, 61, of Leverburgh, Harris, admitted he thought his yacht would be wrecked.

The stranded whale died and its body floated over to Harris, where council bosses had planned to use dynamite to explode the huge corpse.

Last night, a council spokesman said: “We found it was not necessary to blow up the whale with explosives as it was possible to be moved. It will be disposed of at the rubbish tip.”

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