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Last Updated: Tuesday September 22 2009 14:06 GMT

Gilbert the whale dies off coast

Gilbert the whale

A whale that was spotted off the Dorset coast has been found dead on the beach.

The northern bottlenose, which was nicknamed Gilbert after the lifeguard who found her, was discovered on a beach at Alum Chine.

Rescuers think she may have got caught in netting as she was found with rope marks on her beak.

The 6.4m-long whale was first seen on 13 September between Bournemouth Pier and Branksome. Tests are being carried out before her carcass is moved.

Gilbert was last seen in Dorset on Friday and conservationists had hoped she was making her way to the Atlantic.