IUCN has received a report from Sakhalin Energy Investment Company (SEIC) of a Minke whale carcass found on the Sakhalin Coast in the area of Dagi Bay. The incident was reported to IUCN by SEIC management staff on Saturday 02 September, 2006, soon after the carcass was sighted by a regular flight along the coast that looks out for marine mammal carcases.
Two SEIC marine mammal specialists, who were helicoptered to the site on Sunday 03 September, confirmed the dead animal to be a Minke whale.
The carcass which measures approximately 8m in length was found on the beach about 20m from the water. At this stage the cause of death has not been established.
IUCN has encouraged the company to gather relevant information on any whale deaths in the area according to the recommendations made by the Interim Independent Scientific Group (IISG) that met in Vancouver in April 2006 to discuss SEIC monitoring and mitigation plans for the protection of the critically endangered Western Gray Whale.
SEIC have provided the attached photographs of the dead animal.
IUCN considers information of this nature useful for the Western Gray Whale Advisory Panel, whose inauguration will be announced shortly (see WGWAP TOR).