Why Can’t Whales Survive on Land Even Though They Breathe with Their Lungs?

It’s a very saddening sight to see whales beached. This is because none of them survive. But do they really have no chance of going back to the sea safely? Find out in detail below, from the top rated answers of the internet.


Multiple things can go wrong when beached. I think the biggest reasons are their own weight (for really large whales, they can crush organs) and heat exhaustion. However, they can get dehydrated or even suffocate/drown if their blowholes are covered.


Beyond just dying of normal animal things, they’re also adapted to an aquatic environment. Even if you had an air supply, your body would definitely react poorly to being submerged in water. It simply isn’t adapted to an environment where it has to be constantly subjected to being wet, same as how whales are not used to not being surrounded by water. Their cells don’t form the same protective, insulating layer of oils that we do that prevents us from dehydrating.


In addition to what’s already been said, most of the time when a Marine Mammal beaches itself there is something already wrong with it. It is very rare for a healthy whale or dolphin to end up beached. They are typically strong and smart enough to avoid getting caught in currents that leave them in the shallow Waters and low tides. Lots of times the whales and dolphins that end up beached are already dying and exhausted from something else.


They also start to dry out. Fish do this as well, it’s part of the dehydration/heat exhaustion. Just like worms and slugs as well, they need to stay moist or they basically start to cook and turn leathery in the sun.


I did a little research recently, because I noticed that everyone just seems to assume that getting a beached whale/dolphin/orca back into the ocean will either save or extend its life, or at least reduce its suffering until it passes.

Turns out, *doing such may not help the animal, and may in fact increase its suffering and/or speed up its demise. *


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