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Sun Herald Article by Mary Perez - March 8, 2009
Dolphin Calves Wash Up

SunHeraldGULFPORT, MS - It’s a mystery why two newborn dolphin calves washed up on the beach Saturday. It’s kind of odd that we have two in the same day,” said Moby Solangi, director of the Institute for Marine Mammal Studies in Gulfport. The institute was called to remove the remains from the beach.

Photo by Amanda McCoy/SunHeraldThe first, partially decomposed, calf was discovered early Saturday afternoon in Gulfport, across from the Great Southern Golf Club west of DeBuys Road.

Solangi said the second dolphin found later in the afternoon near the Beau Rivage Resort was in a little better condition. Dolphins give birth to one calf at a time and he said. “This is a second mother that may have lost its calf. This is the season they move into the shallower water to give birth.”

Three dolphins have now died in less than a month on the Coast. On Feb. 17 people on the beach in Pass Christian spotted a dolphin; it was rescued and kept afloat by volunteers 24 hours a day while he was treated. The dolphin died a week later.

“We tried our best to keep him going, but his heart gave out.” Solangi said.

Both of the calves will be examined at the institute to try to determine what may have caused their deaths. Solangi said being at the top of the marine food chain, the dolphins reflect what’s going on in the environment. He said it could be related to the recent colder-than-usual weather and water temperatures.

By Mary Perez

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