The wrinkled, emaciated baby whale, who has no teeth, likely got separated from its mother, officials said.
A newborn sperm whale that was found beached in Palm Beach early Monday died shortly after being discovered, authorities said.
The whale came ashore at a private access beach near Via La Selva, north of the Southern Boulevard Bridge, about a mile north of Mar-a-Lago.
Palm Beach Police Public Information Officer Michael Ogrodnick said the department received a call from a resident about the whale at approximately 7:30 a.m.
The wrinkled, emaciated baby whale, who has no teeth, likely got separated from its mother, FWC research associate Amber Howell said. The whale is approximately 13 feet long and weighs about 1,500 pounds, officials said.
Diane Buhler, of the Friends of Palm Beach, which organizes regular beach cleanups on the island beaches, said it is uncommon for sperm whales to beach themselves on the island.
Town police and officials from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, including veterinarians, were early on the scene. The whale was alive as of 9:15 a.m., but officials gave word of its death around 9:45 a.m.
The FWC wants people to know that if they see a beached whale, they should call the agency and not try to get the whale back in the water. The animal may be too weak to swim and would just beach itself again, the agency said.
Staff from Florida Atlantic University's Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute in Fort Pierce came to retrieve the whale so a field necropsy could be done to determine cause of death, veterinarian Dr. Annie Page-Karjian said.
After the necropsy is done, the remains of the whale will be placed in a hired tug boat, which will take it out to sea and sink it, Page-Karjian told the Daily News.
It took a long time to get the whale out of the water because of the high tide and how deeply part of the body was buried in the sand.
Buhler provided assistance with an ATV, and after a long struggle, the whale was dragged out of the water and onto the beach.
The last time a beached whale was found on one of the town beaches, was in June 2017. The kogia male whale, which had been dead at least a day, was about 7 feet long and weighed 400 pounds.