Scientists are reconsidering whether to try to determine the fate of two California gray whales freed from the ice off Alaska's northern coast last month after a three-week international effort.

Officials decided against attaching radio transmitters to the whales, in part because many did not want to find out in case the mammals died soon after the $1 million rescue effort. They were battered and bleeding when freed and had to navigate 200 miles of ice-clogged waters to get to open seas.But now, scientists are considering distributing posters of the whales to California tour boat operators in hopes that it will help someone spot the animals.