Entries in Dolphins (4)


Dolphins Found Shot, Mutilated in Gulf of Mexico

Tom Brakefield/Stockbyte(NEW YORK) -- Authorities are investigating a string of attacks on dolphins along the Gulf Coast after some of the marine mammals were found with gunshot wounds and mutilations.

"We responded to one dolphin from Alabama that had its tail cut off," said Dr. Moby Solangi, of the Institute for Marine Mammal Studies.  "We responded to a dolphin this morning from Ship Island that had its lower jaw cut off.  In the last week, we had a dolphin with a bullet hole in it."

In response, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has asked officials to be on alert for any attacks in the waters off of Louisiana, Mississippi and Florida.

"I think it's important that everyone understand that this is not only cruel, but it's also illegal," Solangi said.

If the perpetrators are caught, they could face up to a year in jail and fines of up to $100,000.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Dolphin Trapped in Shallow Water Off California

File photo. (Tom Brakefield/Stockbyte)(HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif.) -- A dolphin that separated from his pod this week became stuck in shallow water near Huntington Beach, Calif., on Friday, and is at risk of suffocating.

The dolphin was spotted only 12 feet from shore, swimming in circles in the shallow water Friday morning. Officials told ABC News affiliate KABC the dolphin seems disoriented and stressed, and if it were to get stuck in the mud could be at risk of suffocating.

“We don’t know exactly what’s wrong with this animal, but we’re certainly concerned about it because of its abnormal behavior,” Kelly O’Reilly, with the California Department of Fish and Game, told KABC. “It’s highly unusual for a common dolphin to be in Bolsa Bay in the first place.”

Divers were expected to enter the water to help aid the rescue effort.

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Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Hundreds of Dolphins Stranded on Cape Cod Beach

Tom Brakefield/Stockbyte/Thinkstock(CAPE COD, Mass.) -- Rescuers are struggling to save more than 100 dolphins that have beached themselves on the shores of Cape Cod, Mass., over the past two weeks in what could be the largest single-species stranding ever in the northeast.

The dolphins are washing up along the rocky shoreline in groups of as many of 10. At least 80 of them have already died.

“As of right now we’re looking at about 116 since the 12th of January. We’re not really sure why the number is continuing to climb,” Brian Sharp, a representative of the International Fund for Animal Welfare said.

One of the theories is that dolphins searching for food get caught in low tides, which push them to shore.

“When the water level drops, these animals can come ashore and become stranded,” Sharp said.

Hundreds of volunteers are trying to save the dolphins, and trying to prevent them from stranding again by releasing the rescued dolphins in deep water. Early signs indicate that their strategy is working.

The International Fund for Animal Welfare has already rescued 31 dolphins and outfitted them with satellite tags so they can track where they head next.

“Right now we’re at around 66 percent. We release them off of beaches where it gets deep quite quickly. From all these signs that we’ve seen from this event, the satellite tags look very good,” Sharp said.

At least one patient has a shot at a new life, he said.

“We had a pregnant female dolphin that we were able to release,” Sharp said. “We began doing our health exam and sure enough we discovered that the dolphin was pregnant with probably a third trimester calf.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Rising Number of Dead Dolphins Washing Up Along the Gulf

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(HORN ISLAND, Miss.) -- Marine biologists are working to figure out what caused the deaths of nearly two dozen baby dolphins who have washed up on beaches in Mississippi and Alabama since the year began.

On Tuesday, researchers from the Institute for Marine Mammal Studies added to that total when they discovered the dead bodies of four more dolphins on Horn Island, Mississippi, according to ABC News affiliate WLOX-TV in southern Mississippi.

The institute said it is doing necropsies on the mammals, as well as taking tissue samples and running toxicology tests, to determine their cause of death.

There may be a connection between these deaths and last year's BP oil spill, which happened right around the time when dolphins are normally breeding, but it's too early to tell.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio