Lincolnshire Police have launched an inquiry after images were circulating on social media this morning of a person apparently removing teeth from one of the whales washed up on the Lincolnshire Coast.
Officers are advising people not to interfere with the carcasses of the whales, which are a species protected under The Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010. The regulations state that being in possession of any part of the animal, alive or dead, or selling or exchanging any such part, is an offence punishable by six months in prison and/or an unlimited fine.
Force lead for rural crime, Chief Inspector Jim Tyner said:
“It is not surprising that the sad deaths of these animals has generated considerable fascination and large numbers of people have been coming to Skegness to look at them. However, people need to be aware that touching the creatures is a risk to health and taking ‘trophies’ is against the law. Anyone removing teeth or other parts of the whales may be committing a serious offence, the penalty for which can be quite significant”.
The whale carcasses on Skegness beach are being covered in sand to stop movement - before they are finally removed.
Two of the sperm whales which washed ashore on Skegness beach will be moved by a contractor hired by East Lindsey District Council.
The two whales, which are on the south of the beach, will be moved to central beach, where the third whale is lying. They will all then be moved together.
Lincolnshire Police are investigating after a man reportedly took teeth from one of the stranded whales in Skegness.
It's thought a man removed the teeth from the whale near the clock tower overnight.
Chief Insp Jim Tyner, from Lincolnshire Police, says if the man is found guilty he faces an unlimited fine, or a six month jail sentence, under the Conservation of Habitats and Special Regulations law 2010.
East Lindsey District Council says three of four sperm whales, stranded on Skegness beach, are likely to be removed within the next 48 hours - as permission is now in place.
Three whales were discovered over the weekend. A fourth was stranded at Wainfleet just down the coast from Skegness yesterday afternoon.
The Zoological Society has warned more whales could become stranded over the next few days as others have been discovered in recent weeks in places including Norfolk, Germany and the Netherlands.
HM Coastguard says another whale has washed up near Wainfleet. The area is currently inaccessible but the Zoological Society has been informed.
The Zoological Society says tests so far on three whales found washed up dead on a Skegness beach show one of whales hadn't eaten for some time.
Experts say the whales could have struggled to find food in shallow North Sea waters, or have been disorientated by marine noise.
Three sperm whales who washed up dead on Skegness are believed to be from the same pod as the one recently stranded in Norfolk. It is also thought they could be linked to strandings in Germany and the Netherlands in recent weeks.
East Lindsey District Council says it is developing plans to remove the carcasses from the beach, but it could be a few days until this is possible because formal consent needs to be granted.
A post mortem examination will be carried out on the whales to find out how they died.
The Council is asking people not to go through the cordon to touch the bodies.
Three large whales which are thought to have become lost in the shallow waters of the North Sea have washed up dead on a Lincolnshire beach popular with holidaymakers . The 48-foot long sperm whales grounded on the high tide at Skegness, as Jon Hill reports.
Three large sperm whales washed ashore on the Lincolnshire coastline were all thought to be male.Read the full story ›