Thursday, August 21, 2008


The following is an excerpt from ABC.NET.AU:


"The Defence Department could swing into action to help a starving whale calf in Sydney, but the main NSW Government spokesman on the whale's fate says military help may not save it.

Defence Minister Joel Fitzgibbon says his department stands ready to assist in the effort to save the month-old humpback, which is stranded and starving after being abandoned by its mother off Sydney's northern beaches.

Mr Fitzgibbon has confirmed to ABC NewsRadio that he has had a request about using Australian Defence Force (ADF) fuel bladders to tow the whale out to sea, where some hope it would join other whales and find an accommodating, lactating female.

"Yes, well, we're all watching Colin," he said, referring to the whale named after the person who found it.

"He certainly has caught the imagination of most Australians."

Mr Fitzgibbon says he is waiting on more advice from his department.

"We're doing a check now on exactly where we have these bladders, and having established that how we would best get them to the site the location and from there how we would best initiate the process," he said.

"I still haven't had final advice on whether its physically possible, they're getting back to me on that, but I have confirmed that there are bladders around. It's theoretically possible but whether it's practically possible I'm just not sure, I'm still waiting for that additional advice.

"Certainly defence stands ready to assist in any way we can," he said."

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