The humpback whale found dead Tuesday morning on a Rockaway beach probably was hit by a ship, a spokeswoman for the Atlantic Marine Conservation Society said.
The 30-foot-long whale, which was 2 to 5 years old, had “tissue damage consistent with blunt force trauma,” spokeswoman Rachel Bosworth said. Bruising covered about two-thirds of the 20-ton animal and was “consistent with a vessel strike,” she said.
Researchers performing the necropsy also found “extensive kidney parasites,” which may indicate the animal suffered renal damage.
The whale was found Tuesday at 7 a.m. lying on the beach near 117th Street in Rockaway Park. Earlier, Coast Guard personnel spotted the whale floating 9 miles offshore Monday evening, Bosworth said.
The whale was to be buried on the beach Wednesday.