22 pilot whales beached along Fort Pierce's Avalon State Park
5 surviving calves
22 pilot whales were stranded in the surf at Avalon State Park in Fort Pierce, along Florida's Treasure Coast.
At least five of the whales had to be euthanized.
Marine mammal rescue agencies are on the scene, along with state and federal wildlife officers.
PHOTOS: Whales beached along Fort Pierce
"We closed the park to visitors so that the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission task team can safely do their job, and use the parking area as a staging area for the command center and equipment," said Jennifer Diaz of the Florida Park Service.
Rescue crews warmed up a bottle for a pilot whale calf. As they tried to bottle feed him, the calf cried out for his mother who died Saturday morning.
It was a sad event that moved many people to come down and help.
What to do for a stranded marine mammal?
Biologists tell Local 10 that pilot whales are very social mammals and will stick together to matter what.
Causes for a group stranding could include the pod following one sick whale to shore. But they won't know for certain until they examine all of them.
The five strongest whales were taken to SeaWorld for additional rehabilitation, with the hope they will eventually return to the wild as a group.
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