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Whale put to death with explosives

Australian officials used explosives to blow up a terminally ill humpback whale that became stranded on a beach two weeks ago.

The whale was stuck on a beach in Albany, about 240 miles southwest of Perth.

After attempts to return the juvenile whale to the sea failed, the state Department of Environment and Conservation had intended to let the 31-foot creature die naturally.

Explosives were used because officials believed the whale was too large to shoot.

The International Whaling Commission recommends the use of explosives to euthanize beached whales longer than 26 feet.

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