Seven whales out of a group of eight that became stranded on a beach in Co Donegal have died, according to the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group.

IWDG said it had been providing palliative care to the bottlenose whales, which were beached at Rossnowlagh.

Urging members of the public to keep away from the animals, the group said very little can be done for the deep-diving animals when they become stranded. 

"Please give them space and respect to die without too much stress," the group added, after first responders said people were flocking to the beach to take selfies with the whales.

After the tide came in on the stranded mammal, one of the whales could be seen in the shallow waters.

IWDG said it was "cautiously optimistic it will make it out", but the group would be on standby in case it restranded.