Author Topic: Dead dolphins wash up on coast; Gulf oil spill's role unclear  (Read 5397 times)

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Offline pac522

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Dead dolphins wash up on coast; Gulf oil spill's role unclear
« on: October 26, 2011, 07:37:27 pm »
For well over a year now dolphins have been washing up dead on the northern Gulf coast. This story was updated a day ago and still no answers. Not good considering dolphins are near or at the top of the food chain....

Dead dolphins wash up on coast; Gulf oil spill's role unclear
Published: Tuesday, May 11, 2010, 3:01 PM     Updated: Tuesday, May 11, 2010, 3:06 PM

Federal wildlife officials are treating the deaths of six dolphins on the Gulf Coast as oil spill-related even though other factors may be to blame.

Blair Mase of the National Marine Fisheries Service said Tuesday that the carcasses have all been found in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama since May 2.

Samples have been sent for testing to see whether the massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico helped kill the dolphins.

Mase and animal rescue coordinator Michele Kelley in Louisiana said none of the carcasses has obvious signs of oil. Mase also said it's common for dead dolphins to wash up this time of year when they are in shallow waters to calve.

The Associated Press found dolphins swimming and playing in oily waters off Louisiana last week.


Increasing number of dead dolphins washing up along northern Gulf Coast

video at link:
Posted on October 25, 2011 at 6:18 PM

Maya Rodriguez / Eyewitness News

NEW ORLEANS, La. -- With an increasing number of dead dolphins showing up along the northern Gulf Coast, scientists are scrambling to keep up and find the reason behind the deaths.

"Everybody knows that there's something going on. What that something is, is what we're working really hard to try and found out," said Suzanne Smith, stranding and rescue coordinator for the Audubon Nature Institute. "We are doing necropsies, almost on a weekly basis."

There have been 344 strandings along the northern Gulf of Mexico since last November. Three happened just in the last week: one along the Mississippi Coast; the other two along the Southeast Louisiana coast, including a dead dolphin found in the Rigolets.

The federal government, through NOAA, declared the area an "Unusual Mortality Event." Whether or not the deaths are related to last year's oil spill is still not clear.

However, some environmental advocates believe the signs are there.

"We do know that BP put a historic amount of oil in the Gulf of Mexico, in the marine habitat that the dolphins live in, in the coastal habitat that the dolphins use and then they topped it off with a historic amount of dispersant," said Aaron Viles with the Gulf Restoration Network.

Dr. Moby Solangi, director of the Institute for Marine Mammal Studies in Gulfport, believes dolphins are facing an emergency in the northern Gulf right now.

Solangi has been involved in collecting samples from the dead dolphins, but because of the ongoing federal investigation into the oil spill, he said he and other scientists are not allowed to analyze their samples, nor discuss any findings.

However, he said the dolphin deaths indicate trouble.

"If these animals are not healthy, then, ultimately, we may not be healthy," Solangi said.

So far this year, only one live dolphin, which was found stranded, has survived and recovered.
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Offline Optimus

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Re: Dead dolphins wash up on coast; Gulf oil spill's role unclear
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2013, 12:08:49 pm »
Spike in marine mammal strandings documented along La., Miss. coast
Posted on March 20, 2013 at 6:12 PM
Updated Wednesday, Mar 20 at 6:39 PM

Maya Rodriguez / Eyewitness News

GULFPORT, Miss. -- He's a young, hearing-impaired dolphin named Apollo -- and he's scrappy.

"He's got a pretty adventurous personality," said trainer Kelly Pulis.

Apollo is about 3 years old and was discovered near death off Grand Isle late last year. He's one of the 893 marine mammals found stranded along the northern Gulf Coast since 2010. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has labeled it an "Unusual Mortality Event."

"We are seeing a spike in dolphin strandings," said Dr. Moby Solangi, executive director of the Institute for Marine Mammal Studies in Gulfport.

Since the start of this year, Dr. Solangi said marine mammal strandings have been climbing, with 29 in Louisiana and 23 in Mississippi so far.

"The unusual part in Mississippi is that 18 of the 23 are baby dolphins," he said.

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