A highly decomposed whale carcass was identified as a gray whale.
Observation: A highly decomposed partial gray whale (Eschrichtius robustus) carcass was discovered shortly after the discovery of a relatively fresh dead fin whale stranding on St. Paul Island in the Pribilof's. The nature of the carcass required genetic identification, but was confirmed to be a gray whale. Paul Melovidov, BeringWatch Regional Island Sentinel Coordinator
For more information, visit the BeringWatch website at: www.beringwatch.net
LEO says: Alaska Department of Fish & Game (ADFG) - Gray whales (Eschrichtius robustus) are found in the North Pacific Ocean and adjacent waters of the Arctic Ocean, and are the only large whales that can be regularly observed in large numbers from Alaska’s shores. The only major predators of gray whales are killer whales and humans. Many gray whales have healed scars and killer whale teeth marks on their flukes and flippers. To learn more - ADFG, gray whale .pdf
Resource: NOAA FISHERIES | National Marine Mammal Laboratory
Eschrichtius robustus) are mottled gray in color with a narrow V-shaped head. They grow to a length of about 45 feet (13.7 meters) and produce sounds including moans, rumbles and growls. The most prevalent call is a series of knocking sounds.
Gray whales used to be known as "devilfish" because they fiercely defend themselves and their calves against whalers.
There are now about 18,000 gray whales in the Eastern Pacific stock. The eastern North Pacific stock of gray whales was removed from the endangered species list in 1994, however they are protected by the Marine Mammal Protection Act.
The gray whale Western Pacific stock was believed to be extinct until 1925 when a few gray whales were seen off the coast of Siberia. There are still very few sightings of these whales.