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Distressed Whales Rescued Near Clearwater

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CLEARWATER (CBSMiami/AP) - Two distressed melon-headed whales found in shallow off Sand Key have been rescued.

With scores of beachgoers watching Wednesday morning, teams from the Clearwater Marine Aquarium and Clearwater Fire Rescue used large blue bags to move the whales from the water to a large Marine Life Rescue truck.

Melon-headed whales look much like dolphins and typically thrive in deeper water. Officials say they're not sure what caused the whales to become distressed.

Red tide, which is a naturally-occurring algae that poisons fish, has been blamed for killing marine life, including turtles, dolphins, and manatees. But officials say only low levels of red tide have been detected in the waters off Clearwater.

(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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