The world (and YouTube) are waiting with baited breath after locals on a small Island off the east coast of Canada say a rotting whale carcass on a local beach could soon explode, blanketing their town with blubber.
The huge mammal, which died as a result of heavy ice build up in the ocean, washed up on a beach near Trout River, Newfoundland a few weeks ago and has been slowly inflating as its insides decompose.
“The whale is blowing up. It looks as if it’s a big balloon, from a distance,” Trout River’s town clerk Emily Butler, told CBC news of the intact carcass.
“We have a concern … because I’m not sure with the heat and gases that are trapped inside of this mammal if at some point in time it will explode.”
A whale explosion is not impossible. As YouTube videos show, it can be a common occurrence. Most recently, a video of a dead sperm whale exploding in Denmark went viral.
Moving the 24-metre-long whale poses a serious problem for the small town of 600 people, whose fishing capabilities are not equipped for an animal of that size.
Experts have dismissed the likelihood of an explosion, but have warned locals to keep their distance.
“The [whale] skin is starting to lose its integrity and if someone were to walk along, say, the chin — that is full of all that gas — they could fall in the whale,” Canadian scientist Jack Lawson told The Atlantic. “The insides will be liquefied. Retrieving them would be very difficult. I have fallen through the side of a whale up to my chest. It’s not very nice.”
— Don Bradshaw (@DonBradshawNTV) May 1, 2014
Less sympathetic members of the internet community have created a website called Has the whale exploded yet? to document the progress of the decomposing animal.
Latest update: “No. Not yet. And it probably won’t.
For those with a morbid curiosity, you can watch the Danish sperm whale exploding below.
Warning: This is a video of a whale exploding and should not be viewed while eating breakfast.