Huge whale died of starvation after getting stuck in Kent section of the river

The carcass of a 9.5m (28ft) humpback whale was found in the Thames, near Dartford Bridge, on Sunday.

Members of the British Divers Marine Life Rescue spotted the mammal off Gravesend on Thursday, originally thinking it was a mink. The whale wasn’t seen again until it was found dead on Sunday, when it was recovered by the PLA as it was thought to be a hazard to shipping.

A postmortem indicated that the whale died of starvation, estimating that it was just two years old. Rob Deaville, zoologist at the Zoological Society of London told the Guardian, “Once whales get into the river system it is very difficult for them to get out again.”

Fully grown adult humpbacks can grow to 15m (49ft) in length, leading examiners to estimate that this was was a young whale.

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