Twenty-seven pilot whales beached at the top of the South
Island overnight have been euthanised.
The whales were part of a larger pod, which became stranded
at Farewell Spit in Golden Bay yesterday.
Department of Conservation's Golden Bay conservation services
manager John Mason said 12 of the 39 whales died overnight.
The remaining ones had been euthanised after experts assessed
it highly unlikely they could be successfully refloated, he
The whales would be moved above the high water mark once the
tide allowed it, Mr Mason said.
"They'll be allowed to deteriorate naturally."
It was not uncommon for whales to become stranded at Farewell
Spit. In November 2012, 28 whales died after becoming
stranded in the area, and in January that year more than 80
perished after a mass stranding of 99 pilot whales.
- Teuila Fuatai of APNZ