Another exploding whale

Two years ago, I posted about Oregon’s famous exploding whale, complete with video. (If you missed that one, go watch the video now. It’s a classic.) Now it’s time for another.

This video has none of the drama or humor of the Oregon version. It’s short and very much to the point, which is: ICKY. If you have any curiosity about what happens when a decomposing, gas-bloated sperm whale is pierced with a sharp object, wonder no longer. Here it is in 15 seconds of glorious grossness. I feel for the biologist wielding that knife.

You’re welcome for not posting this on Thanksgiving Day.

(Note: If YouTube is blocking your view, try the Daily Mail, which also has more information on where this took place, and why.)

About Fletcher DeLancey

Socialist heathen and Mac-using author of the Chronicles of Alsea, who enjoys pondering science, politics, well-honed satire (though sarcastic humor can work, too) and all things geeky.
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9 Responses to Another exploding whale

  1. Inge says:

    I especially like the laugh on the background. It is still funny.

  2. xenatuba says:

    Oh, my. At least I didn’t know any of the parties involved this time… And I think he was better prepared for that than my friends and co-workers were…

  3. Power Wench says:

    Gaaah!!! I’m surprised the poor biologist didn’t faint from the stench! At least he did stand a little off to the side.
    In ancient history, some of the biologists at the marine lab where we worked acquired for necropsy a small whale (I forget what species now – Pilot Whale maybe?) that had stranded locally and died. They towed the carcass around to the ramp and “railway” where the lab’s small boats were hauled out for hull maintenance, winched it up onto the concrete ramp, and set about with their dissections and specimen collection. Leavings were hauled to sea, and the concrete ramp was hosed down until visibly clean. No explosions, but plenty of stench; from that episode I learned that rotten whale is a smell that pervades everything nearby and the reek will *not* go away. The entire floor of the research building smelled awful for a couple of weeks, and a person could hardly go into the cold room where the specimens were stored. The smell lingered in that cold room for months and months. As to the railway, the liquids must have settled into all the pores of the concrete, because the smell lingered and lingered. More than a year later, I happened to walk by the railway and noticed that after weathering in hot sun and uncounted rainstorms, the eau de rotten whale was no longer detectable to my nose, but it was still strong enough that some of the local dogs were happily sniffing and wallowing on the spot where the whale had been.

    • oregon expat says:

      Ha, great story! I’m also familiar with the stench of dead whale, having been compelled to actually jump in a hole with one.

      We were unburying a whale that had been buried on the beach in the hopes that it would decompose down to the bones, which could then be collected by my team for use at the public aquarium. Of course, anaerobic decomp is much slower than aerobic decomp…which is to say, that whale hadn’t decomposed down to the bones. It was, in fact, entirely intact and very, VERY foul.

      It was bad enough when we were on the surface of the sand, digging around it. But as the hole got deeper, we had to get down in there with it, where no breath of fresh air could dilute the horrifying stench. I jumped in, managed one shovelful, and jumped back out again to gag. It was the only time in my life that I have nearly vomited because of a smell.

      The worst part was that after we got that damn thing unburied, a team from the science center arrived to take possession of it. Did you know that whale carcasses can inspire turf wars? My group lost this one, and had to watch as the science center folks carted off the fruits of our labor. It was believed forever afterward that those people had watched and waited until we were done before they made their move.

  4. Lisa Shaw says:

    And so you were compelled to share? πŸ˜‰

  5. Jorge says:

    I’m guessing by now you’ve already seen the REAL reason why the whale exploded, but if not, here it is:

  6. Jorge says:

    Indeed. Check the last few frames in the video to see just HOW fierce. There’s a wall there. And a ball. And a smudge…

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