Animals and Insects

3rd beluga whale dies at Connecticut aquarium

Staff first noticed something was wrong with Kharabali when she reportedly starting swimming abnormally in November.

Three beluga whales swim together in an acclimation pool after arriving at Mystic Aquarium in 2021.
Three beluga whales swim together in an acclimation pool after arriving at Mystic Aquarium in 2021.
AP Image for Mystic Aquarium
SMS

Kharabali, a beluga whale that was transferred from a theme park in Canada to Mystic Aquarium in Connecticut, has died. 

In a statement, the aquarium said that Kharabali began swimming abnormally in November. She was reportedly placed in a holding pool and then moved to the aquarium's intensive care facility as her health deteriorated. 

"Despite intensive care for multiple health issues and all life-saving efforts, she passed away in the company of the dedicated Mystic Aquarium team that had been by her side throughout," the aquarium stated. 

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A necropsy will be performed on Kharabali to determine a cause of death. 

"Her spirit touched us all, and we are heartbroken by her passing," said Dr. Allison Tuttle, chief zoological officer at Mystic Aquarium. "Kharabali received the utmost care and love during her time with us, and we will always cherish the moments we shared."

Since May 2021, three of the five whales that were transferred from MarineLand in Canada to the Mystic Aquarium have died.

For about a year, there was concern for Jetta, a juvenile beluga whale. The aquarium said she needed "critical care" for about 12 months, between 2021 and 2022. However, she has since recovered from her ailments and is now in the main habitat at Mystic. 

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