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beluga whale

Beluga whales are not supposed to be in the River Seine. Photo: Unsplash//Mendar Bouchali


The Inertia

Beluga whales are not supposed to be in the River Seine. They’re generally found in the waters off the Arctic, so when one was spotted in France, it worried a lot of people.

The lost whale was first spotted on August 2. The Seine, which runs through Paris from the English Channel, has a lock about 50 miles from Paris, which is where the beluga had somehow made its way to. Officials are worried that it already looks underweight, and a rescue plan has been drawn up.

“Sea Shepherd France, together with local authorities, has hatched a plan to rescue the beluga, but its fate still hangs in the balance,” IFL Science wrote on August 5. “Last night, the marine conversation organization said they’re attempting to locate the whale using drones and boats with the aim of providing it with some food.”

Sea Shepherd France weighed in with a little advice for those who might be thinking about helping the whale out. “To all those who care about the fate of the beluga: keeping your distance is essential,” they tweeted. “Help us to help it by respecting these instructions. The interest of the animal prevails over curiosity.”

Belugas, as I mentioned, are not found in the Seine. They are often found near Alaska, the northern end of Canada, and up near Greenland and Russia. Researchers are puzzled as to how, exactly, the whale even found its way to southern continental Europe. Belugas are also used to living in pods with other whales. They rely on each other to hunt and migrate, so this lone whale is likely in serious trouble.

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