The body of a massive sea creature has washed up on a beach in Devon.
Residents first spotted the carcass on Wednesday at Hartland Quay.
Sarah Staff, manager of the nearby Hartland Quay Hotel and Pub, told the Plymouth Herald:
We have reported it to the Government on their specialist whale and dolphin hotline. It’s huge but it’s definitely dead. We think it’s a baleen whale.
The mammal, believed to be nine or ten metres long, has not yet been identified due to its decomposition, though officials believe it may be a fin whale, the second largest mammal in the world next to the blue whale.
Fin whales can live off the coast of the UK, but while their population totals around 50,000-90,000, according to WWF, they are classed as endangered.
They can grow up to 80 feet long and weight almost 80 tonnes.
But as is the case with any beached whale, it’s dangerous to go near them once they’ve washed up on shore.
Stephen Marsh of the British Divers Marine Life Rescue said:
We’d advise people not to get too close the animal and dogs especially can get very ill, very quickly if they manage to eat any of the carcass.
And as seen before, they can also explode.