Beached minke whale frees itself


It’s not quite Free Willy, but here’s a tale with a happy outcome. A young minke whale that became stranded on shingle in Mayo’s Clew Bay earlier this week managed to free itself unassisted and swim away.

The juvenile whale was spotted by Conor McGuire and friends at Berta on the shores of Clew Bay. It was in shallow water, and obviously not there for a quiet paddle.

As the group observed the scene – filming themselves smiling and holding their thumbs up with the whale in the background – the juvenile applied a few furious wriggles.

To the delight of McGuire and company, it then swam away at a brisk pace.

The Irish Whale and Dolphin Group’s stranding co-ordinator, Mick O’Connell, said that such live strandings didn’t tend to have such a positive ending.

He said Mr McGuire was to be complimented for giving the whale the space to work its way off the shingle. McGuire’s recording is on the group’s website,