Entangled whale cut loose off Maui coast

Entangled whale cut loose off Maui coast

KAHULUI, MAUI (HawaiiNewsNow) - A humpback whale that was spotted several times over the weekend with electrical cable embedded in its mouth is swimming free once again.

Animal experts say the humpback was first reported to be in distress on Saturday, in waters off Maui's Pali lookout.

Officials from the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary and NOAA responded, later saying that the whale was entangled in some sort of material that exited both sides of its mouth and fell straight down, toward the ocean floor.

Initial attempts to cut the material away from the whale were unsuccessful, but several tour operators reported seeing the whale again on Sunday, and crews responded once again.

This time, cable cutters were used to trim more than 500 feet of electrical cable from the whale's mouth.

The animal was reported to be slightly emaciated, and is still believed to have some cable inside its mouth, but its overall condition is believed to be "good," according to the agencies.

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