Early morning swimmers were left shocked and saddened when a humpback whale washed up in an ocean pool on one of Sydney's northern beaches.
The 38ft humpback had apparently been dead for a few days before washing up at night in one of Newport beach's ocean baths - an open-air structure on the edge of the beach filled with sea water.
The cause of the 25-tonne whale's death is currently unknown, but Wendy McFarlane from the Organisation for the Rescue and Research of Cetaceans in Australia (ORRCA) said it could have been hit by a ship, according to the Telegraph.
McFarlane said the organisation was now faced with the challenge of how to remove the carcass, with one option being to demolish the pool wall to let the animal wash up on the beach.
According to the Herald Sun, Geoff Ross of the National Parks and Wildlife Service says officer are hoping a high tide will help get the carcass out of the pool.
Hundreds of people flocked to the beach to see the whale and, according to local reports, some were even moved to tears.
Local artist Tim Hixson told the Herald Sun: "You can see how people respond to it. It's amazing that people are so drawn to the whole whale and dolphin thing. It is a powerful force."
Newport beach was temporarily closed because of the potential threat of sharks being attracted by the whale.
Just last week, a whale washed up dead on the beach of a popular seaside town in Scotland.
The large mammal, said to be a minke whale, was spotted on the beach by eyewitnesses at Wemyss Bay in Inverclyde on Friday morning and Clyde Coastguard said it had been floating in the River Clyde for several days.
Dead whale found on popular Scottish beach after floating in river for days
Video: Whale stuck in net containing dead animals for a week is rescued
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