Beluga whale that strayed into France’s Seine river dies during rescue attempt

The rescue attempt had been a risky venture for the beluga, but marine conservation group Sea Shepherd France had said that the malnourished whale would not survive in the warm, freshwater river environment.

After its removal from the Seine, officials had warned of the animal’s poor health.

“The veterinarians are not necessarily optimistic,” Isabelle Dorliat-Pouzet, a senior official from the Eure prefecture, told BFM TV earlier.

“It’s horribly thin for a beluga and that does not bode well for its life expectancy in the medium term.”

In late May, a gravely ill orca swam dozens of miles up the Seine and died of natural causes after attempts to guide it back to sea failed.

In September 2018, a beluga was spotted in the River Thames east of London, in what was then the most southerly sighting of a beluga on British shores.

Beluga whales typically live in pods in Arctic waters.