A growing number of whales are becoming stranded in Osaka Bay, which is known for its maze-like passages, with experts warning the marine mammals are increasingly likely to swim into the area as global warming progresses.

On Monday, the carcass of a sperm whale measuring 13 to 14 meters and weighing 25 to 30 metric tons was found in Osaka Bay. The discovery followed reports of sightings off Kobe a week earlier, with the whale stranded in the bay since late January.

In January last year, a sperm whale died after being spotted struggling near the mouth of the Yodo River in Osaka. The body of the 15-meter-long male, referred to affectionately on social media as Yodo-chan, was later sunk off the Kii Peninsula south of Osaka Bay.