SEA World, the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection (EHP) and the Department of National Parks, Recreation, Sport and Racing (NPRSR) have today undertaken specialist whale rescue training at Wave Break Island today.
The training exercise involved the Sea World boats towing a purpose built training whale to the island to simulate a beach stranding.
The rescue teams covered various aspects of training techniques including conducting health and wellbeing checks, correct use of equipment and how to attach the specially designed towing harness.
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Earlier this year Sea World, EHP and NPRSR used the techniques to successfully rescue a juvenile Humpback whale stranded at Palm Beach.
Sea World’s Director of Marine Sciences, Trevor Long said these training exercises are vital to ensure rescue teams are equipped and prepared for whale strandings and entanglements.
“This is the first time EHP and NPRSR will join Sea World to practice this specific type of beach stranding training, and it is great to be able to practice these exercises with agencies that play such an integral role in these rescues,” Mr Long said.
“During training, we reviewed the equipment and identified the safest method of application, conducted practical situations and scenarios and looked at other methods and ideas which could be implemented for future strandings.
“With more than 20,000 whales travelling past the Gold Coast on their annual migration journey, it is likely that additional animals may become entrapped or stranded, which is why this training is so important.”
To find out more about Sea World’s rescue efforts, click here.