THE remains of a dead sperm whale that washed up on an Edinburgh beach has been taken away for further examination.

Marine experts based in Dunbar, East Lothian, are to look at the carcass in an attempt to ascertain what caused the sperm whale's death after it was found on Portobello beach at about 7.30am on Saturday.

The dead mammal had to be winched out of the water using cranes at low tide following its discovery near the Rockville hotel in Joppa.

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One theory is that it may have been killed by a collision with a boat in deeper water and was then washed to shore.

Images of the carcass showed several deep cuts in its body.

Corinne Gordon, who is a marine mammal medic with British Divers Marine Life Rescue, who examined the whale and took measurements, said that the cuts centred around the mouth and dorsal fin of the 13.8m whale.

Edinburgh City Council has now arranged for the dead whale to be taken to the Scottish Marine Animal Stranding Scheme facility, where an autopsy will be carried out.

Officers from Police Scotland, the SSPCA, Whale and Dolphin Conservation and Scottish Animal Welfare have all been involved in the incident.