File image of a pygmy sperm whale which beached itself on Hutchinson Island in 2016. (Photo courtesy Inwater Research Group)

Pygmy whale dies after beaching on Florida shore

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The whale died after the second beaching.

It came ashore on the north end of Delray Beach, just south of George Bush Boulevard, initially around 1 p.m., FWC spokeswoman Carol Lyn Parrish said.

At that point, bystanders attempted to push the whale back into the water, which is when FWC officials first responded. The whale beached itself a second time around 2 p.m., Parrish said.

Pygmy sperm whales can range from 10 to 11 feet in length and more than 700 pounds, according to NOAA Fisheries.

Parrish said the FWC recommends untrained people do not attempt to push beached whales back into the water.

Whales that beach themselves tend to have some sort of distress -- either an illness or injury.

The whale was euthanized and cleared from the beach around 4 p.m., according to Parrish.

Instead of pushing a beached whale into the ocean again, the FWC recommends reaching out to a 24-hour wildlife emergency hotline at (888) 404-3922.

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