A smart drumline off Ballina. File photo.
A smart drumline off Ballina. File photo. Contributed

Whale gets tangled in smart drumline off Ballina

UPDATE 10.13pm: ORRCA second vice president Jools Farrell said as far as the organisation knew, the whale that swam into a SMART drumline last night was uninjured.

She said SMART drumline contractors are alerted as soon as a whale hits the device.

"If a whale does hit the line the line breaks away and that's what happened yesterday," Ms Farrell said.

"Yesterday the contractor went straight out there and retrieved the gear and line.

"As far as we know the whale is not injured and the contractor collected the gear, which worked in the way that it's designed to (by breaking away)."

Ms Farrell said there was no way to know whether it was an adult or juvenile whale.


Original story: RESCUE groups have been contacted after a whale got tangled in smart drumlines off the coast of Ballina last night.

The Department of Primary Industries, via SharkSmart, said: "A whale appears to have swum through SMART drumlines at Ballina... the gear broke at bungy cord as designed, all but one comms unit recovered, and no sign of any entanglement."

But ‎Daniel Lucas‎ wrote on the Byron Bay Community Board: "So I just saw a whale get tangled in a smart drum line off Lighthouse Beach in Ballina.

"It breached and slapped a lot but couldn't disentangle.

"Last saw it heading east.

"It was dragging the two buoys and travelling at quite a speed."

Commenters said that ORRCA had been notified of the situation.

More to come.