'Hessy' The Humpback Whale Found Dead In River Thames
WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT: A 10-metre humpback whale has been found dead in the River Thames.
'Hessy' was found floating in waters in the Greenhithe area of Kent, east of London, on Tuesday afternoon.
The Zoological Society of London confirmed that she was hit by a ship and suffered a significant wound, but it's not known whether that was before or after she died.
Three boats hauled the hefty female to land before she was winched onto a trailer and taken for a postmortem.
Scientists are hoping to learn more about how the juvenile whale died and also why she entered the Thames in the first place.
"It is incredibly sad -- I was literally two feet from this dead whale," Martin Garside, from the Port of London authority who helped tow the whale, told Reuters.
"Road traffic was thundering overhead on the busiest motorway in Britain and oblivious to all the people in the cars and lorries there was a 10-metre long beautiful whale floating dead beneath them," he said.
It is rare for a humpback whale to be spotted in the Thames. Two others found themselves in the river in 2009 and 2013 -- both died, according to The Guardian.
A Beluga whale named Benny spent three months in the same part of the Thames just last year, drawing huge crowds.
He managed to make his way back to the ocean safely.
Experts believe that Hessy may have made a navigational error during high tide last week and swam up the Thames from the North Sea.