MIAMI – A pilot whale that became beached on Florida’s west coast in July was rehabilitated under the supervision of veterinarians and returned to the Gulf of Mexico on Aug. 8, SeaWorld Orlando said Thursday.
Veterinarians at that theme park in Central Florida worked in partnership with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and other environmental organizations to nurture “Gale,” stranded on July 1 in Dixie County, back to health.
Dr. Lara Croft, a SeaWorld Orlando veterinarian, hailed the effort as a true collaboration among dedicated professionals.
Gale, a short-finned female whale weighing 329 kilograms (725 pounds), was found by beach-goers and saved by rescue teams from the University of Florida and the Clearwater Marine Aquarium.
The whale, which was taken to SeaWorld Orlando for continued medical assistance and rehabilitation, responded well to treatment and began showing signs of improvement almost immediately.
Gale was returned to the wild at a spot some 225 kilometers (140 miles) off of Florida’s west coast that is known as habitat for pilot whales.