(The Atlantic) A dead blue whale washed up on the shore of a small fishing town in Newfoundland last week. A bloated, beached, blubbery bomb of a blue whale. As of 3:30 pm Eastern Time today, the carcass is still intact, but onlookers are worried that it might soon explode. Literally.
The concerned marine science communicators at Upwell and Southern Fried Science have created a website devoted to monitoring this situation:
HasTheWhaleExplodedYet.com. I kid you not.
Blue whales are the largest animals on earth. This one has reportedly ballooned to twice its original size. In the process of decomposition, methane and other gases accumulate in the body of the whale. The buildup of pressure, plus the disintegration of the whale’s flesh, could cause the whole body to burst.