"Hopefully everyone understands. It's in the best interest of the animal," Dr. Craig Pelton told bystanders Monday before administering euthanasia. He said the whale was "emaciated" and likely suffered chronic heart failure.
The Pygmy sperm whale rolled up onto the beach just before 11 a.m. Volunteers flocked to the whale, holding umbrellas to shade it, using buckets of seawater to keep it wet and covering it with towels.
After it was euthanized, the whale was taken to University of Florida for a full examination to discover the exact cause of death, The Daytona Beach News-Journal (Fla.).
"One of the things we like to try and figure out is if there's something we can change," Pelton said.
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