Endangered beluga whale calf rescued off the coast of Alaska

ORLANDO - An endangered beluga whale calf rescued off Alaska's coast is now swimming in his new home at a SeaWorld theme park.

Posted: Mar. 9, 2018 8:11 PM
Updated: Mar. 9, 2018 8:11 PM

ORLANDO - An endangered beluga whale calf rescued off Alaska's coast is now swimming in his new home at a SeaWorld theme park.

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The 5-month-old whale named Tyonek made a 4,000-mile (6,500-kilometer) journey to SeaWorld San Antonio on Thursday.

Tyonek was less than a month old when he became stranded in Alaska's Cook Inlet last fall.

Officials at Orlando-based SeaWorld say Tyonek is the first Cook Inlet beluga calf to be successfully rescued and rehabilitated.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's fisheries service chose SeaWorld San Antonio for Tyonek's new home.

Experts from the Alaska SeaLife Center said Tyonek's mother likely abandoned him or died.

NOAA officials said Tyonek could not be released to the wild because he lacks the survival and social skills needed to thrive on his own.

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