Ventura County

Humpback whale stuck in Ventura Harbor

Whale stuck in Ventura Harbor

VENTURA, Calif. - A humpback whale was located stuck in the Ventura Harbor Saturday afternoon.

Ventura Harbor Patrol said the whale was about 40 feet long and had been stuck among the boats at the harbor since 3 p.m.

Crews from the Ventura Harbor Patrol and the Coast Guard are working to organize a plan to help the trapped whale return to the ocean.

Darrel Kent who lives at the Ventura Harbor said the whale looked distress.

“It doesn’t know where to go," said Kent. "It’s trapped and it’s sad because you want it to get back out to sea.”

Officials stopped their plans to rescue the whale once the sun went down, but Harbor Patrol will continue to monitor the situation overnight.

“Since there is no exact science on how to do this," said Harbor Master, John Higgins. "We are learning as we go and we are talking to different experts up and down the coast. One of the methods we are trying right now that we borrowed from San Francisco is using the acoustic sounds to try to draw the whale out."

At times the method seemed to work, but not good enough to get the whale out of the harbor. A large crowd gathered and witnessed the mammal making really tight turns in the harbor while bumping into docks and boats. At times the whale seemed disoriented.

“It has gotten a little banged up on the docks and from running into the boat but they all appear to be very minor surface wounds on the animal,” said Jennifer Levine, from Channel Islands Marine and Wildlife.

If the whale is still stuck in the harbor in the morning, officials will return to continue to lead the whale back to sea.

We will continue to update the status of the whale as more information comes in.


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