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Free whale-y: Fisherman find and untangle last month's trapped whale

Mar Torres/AFP/Getty Images

A gray whale found tangled up in nets and towing nylon line off the coast of Southern California in mid-April, has been completely freed of debris, says the Pacific Marine Mammal Center.

Fisherman found the whale on Friday off the coast of Bodega Bay and removed approximately 120 feet of rope from the animal.

Nicknamed June, the 40-foot California gray whale, a protected animal, was first spotted last month near Laguna Beach with line stuck on its pectoral fin and another line lodged in its mouth. Rescuers began to cut away at the debris, and floats were attached to help spot the creature later. 

The Spud Point Crab Company fishermen said they also removed the two floats today, according to Melissa Sciacca of the Pacific Marine Mammal Center, who was thrilled to "have such a happy ending."  

Tony Anello, chief executive of the Spud Point Crab Company, said the whale showed "obvious signs of gratitude" for being freed.


Lisa Brenner can be reached via Twitter @lisa_brenner