Tragic story of a Blue Whale
Heartbreaking images of Blue Whale struck dead by ship as it slept
- Body of majestic blue whale found floating on surface of Indian Ocean off southern tip of Sri Lanka
- Gaping wound shows the horrific point of impact with the bow of the ship - leaving the gentle giant's tail fin in tatters.
- Experts want to highlight blue whales' plight in a bid to reduce ship strikes
These heartbreaking images show the body of a majestic blue whale fatally injured as it slept in a busy shipping lane.
It was spotted floating near the surface of the Indian Ocean off the southern tip of Sri Lanka.
A gaping wound shows the horrific point of impact with the bow of the ship - leaving the gentle giant's tail fin in tatters.
Distressing sight: The body of this blue whale was found floating in the Indian Ocean near Sri Lanka after being struck by a ship as it slept
Horrific: The gaping wound where the bow of a container vessel is believed to have collided with the whale's tail
At 200 tonnes, the blue whale is the largest animal on Earth and the largest animals to have ever lived, they dwarf even the largest of the dinosaurs.
Living in the the open ocean, they are found usually found along the continental shelf edges and near polar ice.
A single calf is produced every two to three years, and from birth each calf consumes up to 50 gallons of milk every single day and in its first year of life, a calf gains 90 kilograms per day.
A blue whale's blood vessels are wide enough for a human to swim through.
Its scientific name is Balaenoptera musculus.
Marine experts believe the blue whale – an endangered species with as few as 5,000 left in the wild - had been struck by a container vessel.
The moving pictures were captured by diver Tony Wu, who wanted to highlight the blue whale’s desperate plight in a bid to reduce devastating ship strikes.
Unofficial figures show thousands of whales – many critically endangered species – have been killed by container ships.
'The only statement that can be made is that ship strikes are a serious problem, and the number of whales killed by ships is far higher than most people probably understand.'
Endangered:The blue whale is an endangered species with as few as 5,000 left in the wild
Up close: A close-up view of the throat grooves on the dead blue whale.
Protection: The moving pictures were captured by diver Tony Wu, who wanted to highlight the blue whales' desperate plight in a bid to reduce devastating ship strikes