This week's heartbreaking stranding of 470 pilot whales in Macquarie Harbour, on Tasmania's west coast, highlighted the "impossibility" to prepare for or stop whale stranding events, Marine Conservation Program wildlife biologist Kris Carlyon said.
The Manning Great Lakes has experienced two major whale strandings in recent times, at Crowdy beach in 1985 and at Seal Rocks in 1992. Here's how the Manning River Times covered the 1985 event.
Whales beached at Crowdy
CROWDY Head captured the nation's attention when 38 whales beached there on Monday, June 25, 1985.
The first of the mammals, identified as False Killer Whales, beached at 9.20 that morning and within a space of 20 minutes 37 more joined in, according to Peter Hay's report in the Manning River Times the following day.
Newcomer to Harrington, Brian Johnson was among the first witnesses when he went looking for a place to surf.
"I noticed the whales swimming close to the shore,'' he said.
"Then one beached close to the rocks and the rest followed. They seemed to go crazy getting onto the beach.''
The city media soon took an interest and journalists flocked to both Crowdy and Harrington for the week as the drama unfolded.
By the Wednesday one of the whales had died despite frantic efforts by locals and the Parks and Wildlife officials.
Theories as to why the whales beached abounded with some experts convinced the deaths were caused by the whales' failing guidance system.
By the end of the week around 27 whales had perished. However, there was good news.
Rescuers saved more than 20 by towing four of them out to sea. These four detected another herd of whales further north and headed for them. Remaining whales, which had been relocated in Crowdy Boat Harbour, soon followed.
Photographer Ron Badger captured dramatic photos of the rescue attempts.