On the second day of the new year, an eight month old dolphin was found on the shores of Gulf of Mexico at Fort Walton beach. According to the people that found the dolphin, it washed ashore. The beachgoers did the right thing, which was not to push the dolphin back into the water. Instead, they and called for help. The Gulf Marine Institute took the baby bottlenose dolphin in to rehabilitate it.
The baby dolphin was being cared for around the clock and bottle fed ever few hours. The one week of care for the animal can easily add up and cost 10,000 dollars. On Saturday the 8th of January, the eight month old dolphin started to act oddly. Shortly after, he passed away.
The team at Gulf Marina Institute did everything possible to help the small animal but it wasn’t enough. After he passed, they did a necropsy to find out exactly why this happened. It will take weeks or even months until they get their answers. Once they do, we will update this article.
Right now, the cause of death could be anything. If you are at a beach and see a dolphin or turtle washed up on the beach, do not push it back into the water. The animal could be disoriented or sick and experts need to evaluate them before releasing them back. Sending a sick animal back into the ocean can be dangerous for them and other wildlife.
While not all rescues have happy endings, hopefully the necropsy will provide more clues as to what happened. The hope is once we know what the cause was, it can help prevent the next dolphin from succumbing to the same end.