Some of the 50 pilot whales that became beached on Chapin Beach near Dennis, Mass., are surrounded by rescue workers and onlookers. It was not immediately known why the whales stranded themselves on the Cape Cod beach.
The Comfort of Strangers
Volunteers pour water over the whales and drape them in wet towels to keep them moist and cool.
Removed by volunteers, two dead pilot whales float a short distance from the rescue effort.
Follow The Leader
Rescue workers tag the small black whales. Once the whales are stranded, rescuers typically try to coax a healthy, dominant member of the pod to move into deeper waters, something that usually encourages the other whales to follow.
A Solemn Burden
Workers from the New England Aquarium hold onto dead pilot whales to prevent them from floating out to sea.
Prayers In The Sand
Hundreds of vacationers line a quarter-mile stretch of Chapin Beach to watch the rescuers. Rescue experts hoped the afternoon high tide would help get the animals back to sea.