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LONDON (Reuters Life!) - Marine experts fear a pod of around 100 pilot whales is in danger of becoming stranded off the Western Isles of Scotland.
Around 20 are believed to have severe head injuries, although the cause is yet unknown.
Scotland's animal welfare charity, the SPCA and the British Divers Marine Life Rescue (BDMLR) are monitoring the pod, that appeared off the coast of South Uist in Loch Carnan on Thursday evening.
"At this stage we remain hopeful they will not strand themselves but our concern is the injured whales will come onshore and be followed by the rest of the pod," said Calum Watt, SPCA Senior Inspector.
Last October, 35 whales were in danger of stranding themselves in the same place. Despite returning to sea they were later found dead on the Irish coast.
Reporting by Gemma Fitchett; Editing by Steve Addison