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Entangled Whale In Bodega Bay Rescued

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The fluke of a gray whale emerges from the water. (Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images)

The fluke of a gray whale emerges from the water. (Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images)

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BODEGA BAY (CBS SF) – Researchers and volunteers Monday rescued a gray whale that was entangled in a crab pot line in Bodega Bay.

Sightseers spotted the 18- to 20-foot juvenile whale off of Dillon Beach near brightly-colored buoys three days in a row, according to The Marine Mammal Center.

The sightseers alerted The Marine Mammal Center on Sunday and a rescue effort was coordinated after the U.S. Coast Guard confirmed that the whale was trapped and not just lingering in the area, center officials said.

The rescuers found the whale close to shore in about 25 feet of water with a crab pot line wrapped around its left pectoral fin as well as inside and around its mouth, according to the center.

After about three hours, the rescuers managed to cut away the line and free the whale, center officials said.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco and Bay City News Service. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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