The “creature” was actually… a pair of extremely rare conjoined gray whale twins! Most newborn gray whales are about 12 feet long; clearly, something had gone very wrong with this birth. Scientists speculated that the pair was likely the product of a miscarriage. While it may be a relief that this was not actually a sea monster, it’s upsetting that such innocent creatures could never survive for long in the wild.
It should be noted that these conjoined whale twins were found on a December day. Most gray whales are born between the beginning of January and the middle of February, so these may have been premature.
Gabriel Barathieu / WIkimedia Commons
Though humans are the only natural predators of these whales (other than orcas), the Eastern North Pacific gray whales are filed under “least concern” on the International Union for the Conservation of Nature’s Red List of Threatened Species.
José Eugenio Gómez Rodríguez / Wikimedia Commons
Because of the prevalence of whaling, in which they’re hunted for parts of their bodies like their meat and bones, some species are now extinct. The North Atlantic gray whale has been extinct since the 18th century.
Ryan Somma / Wikimedia Commons
Luckily, the species that are still alive to this day are, like any other marine mammal, absolutely majestic. Hopefully, this was just a freak accident, and the mother is fine!
Merrill Gosho / Wikimedia Commons
It definitely looked like some kind of sea monster initially. Let’s hope mama is OK and that she’ll go on to have plenty of healthy babies.
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