Two visitors to Stewart Island, New Zealand, found 107 pilot whales stranded at a remote beach, reported the Department of Conservation.  These whales were euthanized.

New Zealand officials said by the time Department of Conservation staff were able to arrive at the location, about half of the whales were already dead.  After assessing the situation, they realized the whales could not be saved and therefore decided to euthanize these animals.

In total, 48 pilot whales were put down.  These whales will then be left to decompose naturally on the beach due to the remoteness of the stranding location. 

Whale strandings, while rare, are not abnormal occurrences; instances of it have happened throughout history.  Pilot whales are one of the more susceptible species to this accident.

Click Start to view pictures of this and other strandings.