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Washed-up whale gets graffiti tag

A dead whale that was washed ashore on the US east coast suffered further indignity when someone tagged it with graffiti.

The minke whale, which was 12ft to 15ft long, was discovered under the famous Central Pier in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

Police said the purple markings are not gang-related and appear to be Greek letters.

The letters appeared to be Tau Epsilon Phi, a fraternity that has chapters at several local schools, followed by what looked like "94".

Bob Schoelkopf of the Marine Mammal Stranding Centre said the whale appeared to have been dead for several days and washed up during a strong storm.

It had no sign of trauma. A state pathologist will try to determine the cause of death.

The discovery came as the Canadian east coast town of Trout River faced the unpleasant side effects of another whale carcass.

The 85ft blue whale was beached next to a community boardwalk and was emitting a powerful stench that spread through the town of 600 people.

Local officials are worried that the methane gas brought on by decomposition could cause the animal to burst and shower whale innards over a wide area

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