A mysterious carcass has washed up on a Gower beach.
The smelly and rotting body was discovered by dog walker Carys Williams.
She said: “We were on the beach walking with my dog and I saw it in the distance. I thought ‘that is a big piece of driftwood’.”
According to Carys, who is a gymnastics coach based in St Mellons, Cardiff, this is not the first large animal that has washed on the beach.
The 28-year-old said: “As I got closer I realised what it was not driftwood and put my jumper over my face. There was a shark that washed up about a year ago and that really did smell so I was prepared.
“I put the dog straight back on the lead, I didn’t want him rolling in that.”
Pictures from the beach show a large marine mammal which is heavily decomposed. A large bony rib cage is exposed and decaying flesh is hanging off the body which looks to have been a feast for other ocean animals.
The body was found near Llanmadoc on a beach called Whiteford Sands.
Due to the decomposed state of the animal it is hard to properly identify what species it is.
According to a spokesman for Natural Resource Wales there has been a recent spate of stranded whales across Cymru.
He said: “Since mid-January, an unusually high number of stranded whales have been reported on Welsh beaches at Gower, Bridgend, Barmouth and Dyffryn Ardudwy, Gwynedd.
“The whales have all been in an advanced state of decomposition, so it’s difficult to identify species but they are thought to be a species of deep diving beaked whale (Cuvier’s Beaked Whales – Ziphius cavirostris ).
“The Cetacean Strandings Investigation Programme (CSIP), funded by UK and devolved co-ordinate the investigation of stranded whales, dolphins and porpoises around the UK.
“The CSIP team are investigating the recent strandings. If you find a stranded whale, dolphin or porpoise please report it to the CSIP by calling the hotline 0800 652 0333 or visiting their website http://ukstrandings.org.”
One other theory is that the animal could be a northern bottle nosed whale that was reported to be struggling off the north Wales before the new year.
It has a bulky head that ties in with the northern bottle nosed whale as well as a low dorsal fin.