Beluga whale in Thames ‘foraging normally’

The whale breaching the surface of the Thames on Thursday afternoon

The whale breaching the surface of the Thames on Thursday afternoon

Jessica Savage reports from in Gravesend in Kent, where the whale has been sighted.

The first noticed the white whale ecologist Dave Andrews.

More interesting is that the whale was still in the river on Wednesday and even received a name: Benny!

It appears to have moved a few miles further west since yesterday.

Conservationists and animal experts were hopeful the tide would take the rare arctic mammal back out to sea, so it could find its way home.

One theory is that it followed a shoal of fish while seeking food.

Rescue teams have been put on standby in case the whale gets into distress.

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RSPCA says "at the moment, there are no major concerns for the welfare of the animal". They are usually associated close to the ice.

The WDC's Danny Groves told the UK Press Association, "He or she is obviously very lost and quite possibly in trouble".

A rare beluga whale has spotted in the River Thames in London for a second time in as many says.

"Can't believe I'm writing this, no joke - BELUGA in the Thames off Coalhouse Fort", the Norfolk, England, resident posted on Twitter Tuesday. Highly sociable, they typically form pods and are often seen in river estuaries in the summer.

The worldwide population is thought to be about 150,000.

The previous reported sightings of beluga whales in United Kingdom waters were in 2015, when two were spotted off the northeast coast of England and one in Northern Ireland.

In 2006, a northern bottle-nosed whale up to 18ft long (5m) became stranded in the Thames for two days. It died, after suffering from convulsions, near Gravesend as the barge rushed towards the open sea.

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