News from the DNR Office of Communications

DNR Completes Examination Of Whale Carcass Found In Ocean City

Ocean City, MD (July 15, 2010) — The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has completed a full necropsy of a humpback whale that washed ashore on July 8 in Ocean City, Md. The carcass was examined by staff from DNR’s Sea Turtle & Marine Mammal Stranding Program.

“The juvenile female whale was in advanced stages of decomposition, which made it difficult to determine the cause of death,” said Jamie Schofield, Coordinator of DNR’s Sea Turtle & Marine Mammal Stranding Program.

The Ocean City Department of Public Works (DPW) removed the carcass from the surf and transported the whale to an offsite location for examination. The DPW worked in conjunction with the Ocean City Police Department, Ocean City Beach Patrol, Ocean City Animal Control and Natural Resources Police to keep the public safe from the large carcass, which washed in near Sixth Street.

Marylanders can help by reporting sightings of animals (alive and dead) to the Sea Turtle & Marine Mammal Stranding Program. Staff from the program work with the National Aquarium and the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration to respond to stranded marine animals in Maryland waters. To inform officials of a stranding, citizens should call the toll-free report hotline, which is available 24 hours per day at 1-800-628-9944.

   July 15, 2010

Contact: Josh Davidsburg
410-260-8002 office I 410-507-7526 cell

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is the state agency responsible for providing natural and living resource-related services to citizens and visitors. DNR manages more than 449,000 acres of public lands and 17,000 miles of waterways, along with Maryland's forests, fisheries, and wildlife for maximum environmental, economic and quality of life benefits. A national leader in land conservation, DNR-managed parks and natural, historic, and cultural resources attract 12 million visitors annually. DNR is the lead agency in Maryland's effort to restore the Chesapeake Bay, the state's number one environmental priority. Learn more at