Thirty-five whales have beached and died on an island off Burtonport in Co Donegal.

The whales were discovered this afternoon on a beach on Rutland Island and are understood to be pilot whales, mostly mothers and calves.

The whales had been seen feeding in the area around Aranmore Island since Tuesday.

Pilot whales have a tendency to beach themselves in large numbers and a similar incident occurred in Co Mayo some years ago.