A final decision has yet to be made on what to do with the remains of the fin whale that died at Baltimore pier yesterday.
The 50ft fin whale became stranded at the pier on Tuesday morning and following a distressing three days, where the animal battered itself against the pier wall, it finally died just after 11am yesterday morning.
Prior to its death it had been considered to bring in the Army and Navy to shoot the whale dead.
Now, a number of options are being explored as to what to do with the carcass.
The whale, whom locals have named Finbarr, has sunk in two to three metres of water and nothing will be done until it floats again in two to three days time once the putrefaction process takes place.
It has been suggested that once re-floated the whale would be transported up river to Oldcourt and then taken to Waterford for incineration.
However, locals are suggesting they would like to retrieve the skeleton for display and education purposes.
In 2009, locals in Kilbrittain preserved the skeleton of a whale that became stranded on a nearby beach and it has since been used as a visitor attraction.
“If the people in Baltimore want to do something similar, we would totally support them,” said Padraig Whooley of the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group. We would see that as something very positive coming out of this and it would be a great educational and tourism resource. We’d be very keen to encourage this course of action,” he added.
The fact that the whale is still in water, and not on a beach, has made disposal of the carcass more difficult.