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Last Updated: Wednesday, 1 February 2006, 19:47 GMT
Whale watering can makes 2,050
Whale rescuer using watering can
Funds will pay for new equipment to free whales caught in nets
A red watering can used by rescue teams trying to save a whale stranded in the River Thames has been sold for 2,050.

The British Divers Marine Life Rescue Group (BDMLR) auctioned the vessel via website eBay and the highest bidder was a Canadian-based gambling website.

The charity had thought the sale would easily cover their 5,000 rescue bill when bids reached as much as 115,000.

But it later emerged that the auction had been hijacked by spoof bidders trying to advertise their own shops.

The brightly-coloured can was seen in TV coverage and pictures around the world as Faye Archell from the rescue crew tried in vain to hydrate the lost northern bottle-nosed whale.

Kidney stone

The team had been trying to take the female adolescent back out to sea on a rescue barge when she died.

Tony Woodley, spokesman for the BDMLR, said the can was bought by goldenpalacecasino.com, a website specialising in the strange and unusual.

It recently bought a kidney stone passed by Star Trek actor William Shatner for 14,000.

The money will go towards buying new equipment to free whales entangled in fishing nets and training volunteers to use it, said Mr Woodley.

The charity also received 10,000 from public donations in the first week after the dramatic rescue, watched by millions around the world.




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