Discovery Channel documents whales' overland voyage | DrumhellerMail
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Last updateThu, 21 Jan 2021 5pm

Discovery Channel documents whales' overland voyage

Palcoprep made delivery of the first whale skeleton they cleaned and assembled for a tourism pavilion in Newfoundland. Along the way the Discovery Channel joined them.
    In June of this year, The Mail brought readers the story of the Palcoprep’s project to complete a series of whale skeletons for an interpretive project in Newfoundland.   
    The first specimen was a sperm whale and Palcoprep director Frank Hadfield delivered and assembled the model in Triton, Newfoundland last week.


    The Discovery Channel documented the process. On Wednesday, November 19 Hadfield was back in their shop in Drumheller where he was interviewed via satellite for the television channel on the continuing project. The footage is to be aired on the Daily Planet, but it is not known when.
    With the delivery of the sperm whale, the shop is currently prepping a humpback whale skeleton, which will be about 55 feet in length when completed. 
    The projects keep getting bigger. On the trip, Hadfield not only delivered the whale, but also brought back the jawbones of their biggest specimen yet, a fin whale, which when completed will measure in the area of 65 feet.
    Gilles Danis of Palcoprep says it is a learning experience every step of the way. The current humpback whale skeleton differs from the sperm whale they completed as the humpback has much larger, heavier fins. The humpback was also partially buried making  it a bigger challenge for the bleaching process.
    The biggest challenge for the fin whale will be its size. It took a picker truck to load and unload the jawbones of the huge animal.
    Currently the shop is feverishly working to finish the humpback specimen. Interestingly enough, the schedule for completion was interrupted by the federal election. Once the election was decided, the shop was given the go-ahead to continue.
    To complete the project, the shop expects to receive a smaller minke whale and an orca.

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