CUDJOE KEY, Fla. -- Two pilot whales found stranded in the Florida Keys have been released.
Twenty pilot whales beached themselves Thursday in shallow water off Cudjoe Key. Seven survived and were confined in a makeshift pen to be treated for dehydration.
Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary spokeswoman Karrie Carnes told The Key West Citizen that blood tests indicated two of the whales were healthy enough to be released into deeper waters. The male whales were released without a hitch Saturday about nine miles off the lower Florida Keys. The first lingered briefly, and they then swam off together to the cheers of volunteers.
Necropsies are planned for the 13 whales that died.
Cudjoe Key is in the Lower Keys about 20 miles east of Key West.