Biologists monitor pilot whales off SW Florida

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FORT MYERS BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Two pilot whales have died and a third will be euthanized after dozens of whales swam into shallow waters off southwest Florida.

Kim Amendola of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Fisheries Service says a handful of whales stranded Monday near shore in Lee County. More than a dozen other whales were swimming nearby, and an additional 12 whales had been spotted farther offshore earlier in the morning.

NOAA regional stranding coordinator Blair Mase says necropsies will be performed on three beached whales. She says the remaining whales appear listless and emaciated.

Officials were monitoring roughly two dozen other pilot whales in the waters off Collier County. Those whales were the same pod that swam into shallow waters off Naples on Sunday. Mase says they also appear in poor shape.

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