A dead whale had attracted onlookers to a beach beneath the homes of movie stars who live on the cliffs above.
MALIBU, Calif. — The decaying carcass of a whale that washed onto a California beach has been towed out to sea.
Los Angeles County Fire Inspector Brian Riley says a tugboat hired by a homeowners' association towed the carcass of the huge whale about 20 miles from shore Saturday.
The 40-foot-long whale washed ashore Monday, creating a big stink and attracting onlookers to the narrow beach in Malibu. The homes of movie stars and millionaires line the cliffs high above the beach.
No government agency took action to remove the dead whale, and it appeared the job would be left to Mother Nature.
The fire department's lifeguards patrol beaches in Malibu, but Riley says the homeowners did not take up the lifeguards' offer to help with the towing.
The whale may have been hit by a ship and had a gash to its back and a damaged spine, according to results of a necropsy conducted Tuesday by the wildlife center.
"It's relatively common for it to happen. It's really unfortunate," Reyes told the Los Angeles Times.
Such accidents have become more common as increased numbers of migrating blue, fin and humpback whales swim to California's shore to feast on shrimp-like krill.
Fin whales are endangered and about 2,300 live along the West Coast. They're the second-largest species of whale after blue whales and can grow up to 85 feet, weigh up to 80 tons and live to be 90 years old.
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