Beached Humpback Whale on Maui

Kim Kahakuwila
Kim Kahakuwila

KAHULUI (KHNL) -- Surfers came upon a grim discovery Monday on Maui: a beached humpback whale.

The calf beached itself at Puamana Beach, south of Lahaina, at around 10 a.m.

The Pacific Whale Foundation says the calf appeared to be just a couple of weeks old, measuring about 8 to 10 feet in length.

Doctor Quincy Gibson, a researcher with the foundation says, there were no visible man-made cuts or shark bites on the whale.

But witnesses noticed sharks following the young humpback.

"We were just watching the sharks just jumping up and just biting it and stuff like that, but meanwhile the whale was trying to swim in," said witness Kim Kahakuwila.

Doctor Dibson says the whale appeared to be sick.

A necropsy, the term used for an autopsy of an animal, will be conducted to determine the cause of death.

Just this past weekend, the Pacific Whale Foundation conducted its annual great whale count, off the coast of Maui.

It tallied 1,726 sightings of humpback whales in a three hour period.