Moby's skeleton may be preserved

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The Independent Online
The story of Moby, the 40ft sperm whale who captured the hearts of the nation, finally comes to an end today when he will be hauled off mud flats by the Coastguard.

Falkirk council officials said that the whale will be moved in a joint effort by the Coastguard's Receiver of Wrecks and the council.

Moby died on mud flats at Airth in the Firth of Forth on Easter Monday after becoming disorientated and beaching himself while trying to swim inland.

His remains will be towed to a slipway at South Alloa before being taken to a council landfill site at Kinneil where an autopsy will be performed.

Andrew Kitchener, curator of mammals and birds for the National Museums of Scotland said yesterday the museums were interested in preserving Moby's skeleton but it depends on financial support. The cost of collecting and treating the skeleton before it could be studied and displayed was about pounds 5,000.

Alex Kilgour, spokesman for Deep Sea World aquarium in Fife which co- ordinated rescue attempts to save Moby said: "We want to see that Moby is taken away and an autopsy carried out away from the public eye in a dignified manner."

A Moby memorial fund has been set up at Deep Sea World to fund research into why whales become disorientated.