Get SF Weekly Newsletters

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Jurisdictional Disputes a Whale of a Problem When Dealing with Whale Carcasses

Posted By on Tue, May 5, 2015 at 10:29 AM

click to enlarge Vintage engraving of a beached whale in France - SHUTTERSTOCK.COM
  • Vintage engraving of a beached whale in France

A dead whale has washed up on the shores of Pacifica, the second in just a few weeks, NBC Bay Area reports. The whale, which was found last evening and will undergo a necropsy tomorrow to determine the cause of death, is a female hunchback (sorry!) humpback. It is about half the size of the sperm whale that's been rotting on the same beach since April 15. 

The first whale is still decomposing on the beach—and attracting the attention of taggers—due to a jurisdictional dispute. 

Per NBC Bay Area
The whale hasn't been moved, according to Police Chief Dan Steidle, because no jurisdiction has yet to claim it. Steidle told NBC Bay Area that the dispute is whether the first whale's body lies on the property of the city of Pacifica, the federal government - the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, the city and county of San Francisco's Recreation and Park District, or the state of California. He said the city is waiting for a ruling to decide who will move the whale and how to move it. Scientists at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said the best thing to do is to tow the whale back out in the ocean, but at this point, it may be too late, he said, because the carcass of the sperm whale is deeply embedded in the sand.

As for the humpback found on Monday. "This one is definitely San Francisco's," Steidle said.

  • Pin It

Tags: , , ,

About The Author

Julia Carrie Wong

Julia Carrie Wong's work has appeared in numerous local and national titles including 48hills, Salon, In These Times, The Nation, and The New Yorker.

Comments (2)

Showing 1-2 of 2


Comments are closed.

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed

Like us on Facebook


  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"