Valuable teeth have been stolen from some of the carcasses of the seven beached sperm whales that died earlier in the week on Parara beach, Yorke Peninsula in South Australia.
South Australian authorities have issued warnings that action will be taken against members of the public if they go near the dead whales. Regulations state that a person who is on land must not move closer than 50 metres to a marine mammal or they could face a fine of up to $100,000.
Mass strandings involving seven sperm whales are rare and samples from the dead whales will now be taken to try to discover why the incident occurred. It is thought that one of the whales could have been ill and the others followed the creature into the shallow waters. They may also have become trapped after following prey close into the shore.
Find out more about why whales and dolphins strand.