A whale that had lost its entire tail has been filmed swimming in the sea, shocking onlookers as it reveals its ragged wound.
WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT
At the beginning of the video, the humpback whale calf can be seen in swimming through the water, seemingly quite normally.
However, it's when it dives that you spot a stump and painful-looking, horrific wound where its tail once was.
The poor whale was spotted in the Pacific Ocean off the western Colombian town of Nuqui, and it is believed that it may have lost its tail after becoming tangled in an abandoned fishing net. Experts think that a net could have become so tightly wrapped around the whale's tail, that the circulation got cut off - eventually resulting in the creature sadly losing the tail.
The heartbreaking footage was captured by members of the Macuaticos Foundation, a marine conservation organisation that has said the young whale will tragically not survive for much longer.
Biologist Cristian Bermudez said: "The whale will probably not survive because the tail is essential for travelling around the sea and it is fundamental for deep dives."
Natalia Botero, director of the foundation, also added: "We searched for her for a week and when we found her we saw huge coffee-coloured injuries that looked gangrenous."
Botero explained that the foundation has been working with local villagers to try and help combat a similar incident happening again, urging locals to change the fishing practices that threaten marine wildlife.
She added: "Those people have been fishing in this way their whole life and it is the way they survive, so we should find alternatives for them."
The scenes have also prompted the Marine Program of the International Preservation of Colombia try and persuade fishermen not to leave their fishing nets abandoned in the sea.
Director of the MPIPC, Maria Clara Diaz Granado, said: "It is terrible to see how big mammals are suffering for our fishing activities that are not properly controlled."
Humpback whales apparently swim past Colombia each year as they embark on their annual migration to their breeding grounds, which are based in the south-eastern Pacific Ocean.
But there are sadly some whales that get into tricky situations on the way, with UK organisation Whale and Dolphin Conservation referring to this entanglement in fishing nets as the 'biggest threat facing dolphins, porpoises and whales'.
Got a story for us? Need to tell us about something amazing you've seen or done? Want us to investigate something? Get in touch! Email [email protected] or head to our submissions platform - and you could even earn money for your stories or tips.
Featured Image Credit: CEN