Time running out for Florida pilot whales still stranded in Everglades National Park, 41 still alive

NOAA: 10 whales dead, 41 at risk

EVERGLADES NATIONAL PARK, Fla. - Time is running out for a pod of pilot whales that remained stranded Wednesday deep inside the Everglades National Park.

Rescue crews from NOAA and the U.S. Department of Fish and Wildlife worked for hours to try to reroute what remained of the 51 pilot whales.

"It's upsetting but you have to take yourself to a point where you are just doing the best you can for the animals with what you have," said Liz Stratton, a marine biologist with NOAA.

Crews do not yet know why the whales stranded themselves near the remote location of Highland Beach.

At least six pilot whales were discovered dead on Wednesday and another 4 were euthanized.

The shallow waters are proving to be a challenge to rescue crews.

What the other difficulty crews are facing is that each time they push the whales back to sea, they continue to swim back to their injured pod.

"It's very difficult. They're herding animals and they want to stay together. So once one is ill, they want to stay with it," said Kristine Mol, a rescuer.

Crew said they will return to the ocean on Thursday morning.

A wildlife official said it is possible they discover that the whales swam out of the Everglades on their own.

If the whales continue to remain stranded, they might have to make the tough choice to euthanize what is left of the pod.

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