A WHALE has been entangled in rope near Portland.
Officers from the department of environment, land, water and planning (DELWP) have been called to the scene at Bridgewater.
The incident was reported to DELWP by the public and DELWP regional agency commander David Mifsud confirmed a whale had been entangled in rope with two buoys attached.
“The situation has been declared an emergency, and an Incident Control Centre has been established at Heywood,” he said.
“Early indications suggest it is a sub-adult Southern Right Whale.
“Specialist DELWP personnel are on site and monitoring the whale.
“A vessel has been dispatched from Portland to assess the whale, while a plane has been engaged to monitor the whale’s location and monitor the safety of the situation.
“The plan is to free the whale as quickly as possible, however, with night approaching, this operation may not be completed until tomorrow given the safety and welfare risks for both our staff and the whale.
“It’s hoped a larger buoy can be attached to the whale before dark to assist with tracking the mammal overnight.
“We will continue to provide updates to the community as the situation progresses.
“Members of the public are urged to stay clear of the whale, for their own safety and for the mammal’s welfare.”