NOAA investigating gray whale washed ashore at Camano Island

Gray whale washed ashore on Camano Island, Washington (Lisa Madigan).

Federal environmental scientists are investigating a dead gray whale that washed up on the shore of Camano Island.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) says their marine mammal team on the West Coast is preparing a necropsy to find out what happened to the whale.

Teams have determined the whale is not "#44 Dubnuck," one of the Sounders that visits the Puget Sound area every year.

This is not the first gray whale stranded on the West Coast. NOAA says they are investigating a trend in gray whale strandings along the western seaboard, related to an ‘Unusual Mortality Event’ declared in 2019.

Scientists will leave the gray whale to decompose on the beach, returning nutrients back into the marine ecosystem.

'Unprecedented:' Gray whales arriving in Washington waters earlier than normal

Experts say the small population of gray whales are returning to Pacific waters earlier than usual. 

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