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    Whale dies at Clearwater Marine Aquarium

    By Times staff writer

    © St. Petersburg Times, published October 19, 2000

    CLEARWATER -- A young, female dwarf sperm whale found stranded last month died Wednesday at Clearwater Marine Aquarium.

    The 5-foot whale, which aquarium workers named Daisy, began having trouble swimming about 7:30 a.m. Wednesday, said aquarium spokesman Scott Swaim. Volunteers monitoring the whale then got into the 40,000-gallon pool she was in to hold her.

    She died 30 minutes later, Swaim said. Daisy had stayed at the aquarium since Sept. 20, the day workers at Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute in Fort Pierce delivered the 123-pound whale to Clearwater Marine Aquarium biologists and volunteers at Yeehaw Junction on State Road 60.

    The whale was found Sept. 18 in shallow water near Vero Beach. Swaim said volunteers and aquarium employees monitored Daisy 24 hours a day. He said they began noticing earlier this week that she was eating less.

    A necropsy was being conducted at a pathology lab at Eckerd College in St. Petersburg to determine why she died.

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