A whale of a, well, whale

A whale of a, well, whale
John Quadrozzi Jr.

The small whale that wandered into the Gowanus Canal this week, filling one of Brooklyn’s grittiest places with a touch of nature, died on Wednesday.

Conservationists and the Coast Guard had worked overtime to rescue the 12-foot Minke whale, dubbed “Sludgie,” since his first sighting on Monday made him an instant celebrity.

But this was no spring fling for the lost leviathan; the Coast Guard believes it got separated from its mother during Sunday’s nor’easter and ended up in the Gowanus in a quest for food.

The Coast Guard took special precautions to keep the whale alive by barring boats from parts of the canal, but he died after apparently hitting some submerged rocks near an oil facility at the end of Clinton Street.