Locals are calling it the China Sea Monster as it washed up on along the shore on their beach. The monster was so badly decomposed, the sea creature could not be accurately identified by China officials. It is 55 feet long and weights approximately 4.5 tons.
One fisherman, known only as Hwang, 66, said he was astonished by the find. People have flocked to see the corpse, despite the rotting foul stench. The beast is tangled in ropes, and locals theorize that area fisherman once caught the China sea monster but could not haul it in.
Upon seeing a photo of the carcass, three marine biology experts, Scott Baker of Oregon State University Marine Mammal Institute, Bill Perrin, senior scientist for marine mammals at the National Marine Fisheries Service, and Bob Brownell, senior scientist for international protected resources with the National Atmospheric and Oceanic Administration’s Fisheries Service, all think the China sea monster is nothing more than a whale.
Based on its throat grooves, “[we agree] that it’s a balaenopterid,” Baker told Life’s Little Mysteries. “Judging from the reported size of 55 ft., maybe a fin whale. From the photo, however, it does not really look to be 55 ft., and so might be a smaller balaenopterid, like one of the ‘Bryde’s’ whales.”
Byrde’s whales, are baleen whales, one of the “great whales” or rorquals. They prefer tropical and temperate waters over the polar seas that other whales in their family frequent. They are largely coastal rather than pelagic. The China sea monster could just be a Bryde’s whale after all.
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