Thousands Flock to See Wayward Whales Lost 90 miles Inland

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

WEST SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - Thousands of spectators are taking advantage of the first weekend since two whales swam 90 miles inland to catch an unlikely glimpse of the deep sea creatures.

The wayward pair - dubbed Delta and Dawn - are not disappointing onlookers. Crowds along the banks of the Port of Sacramento this afternoon shrieked every time the mother and calf surfaced for air.

The spectacle has taken on the air of a carnival with cops directing traffic and vendors selling ice cream.

The whales seem content to entertain the crowd. They have mostly been swimming half-mile laps since scientists decided to leave them alone for the weekend.

Experts worried heavy recreational boat traffic in the delta could have complicated rescue efforts.

Scientists now plan to resume efforts Monday to lure the pair back to the ocean by playing recorded sounds of other humpbacks feeding.

If that doesn't work, they may use dozens of boats and noises of pipes banging underwater to corral the whales back toward the ocean.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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