The search for an entangled humpback seen off Sydney has been called off

Whale Watching SydneyThe rope wrapped around the humpack’s tale off Bondi.

The search today for a 10-metre-long humpback whale tangled in netting off Sydney on Wednesday afternoon has been called off without success due to bad weather.

The seemingly exhausted whale, believed to be a sub-adult with ropes that appear to be from a fish net wrapped around its tail and body, was discovered by a whale watching cruise about 4km off Bondi Beach on Tuesday afternoon.

Crew members from Whale Watching Sydney used a boat hook, reef anchor and knife in an unsuccessful attempt to cut away the ropes, which have caused cuts and abrasions.

There were fears that the whale was so exhausted it may not make it through the night. The NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service dispatched a helicopter and several boats off Sydney Heads early on Wednesday, but were unable to locate the animal.

With conditions worsening, making it harder to spot anything, and a gale warning issued, the search was called off this afternoon.

An NPWS spokesperson said the search may resume if conditions improve.

Whale Watching Sydney Operations Manager Jonas Liebschner shared with Business Insider some of the photos taken yesterday of the whale as the crew did its best to free the animal.

Whale Watching SydneyWhale Watching Sydney crew managed to grab some of the ropes around the humpback and attempted to cut it free.
Whale Watching SydneyThe rope had caused cuts and abrasions on the whale.
Whale Watching SydneyThe whale appeared exhausted when the Whale Watching Sydney boat pulled up alongside it.
Whale Watching Sydney

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