Saturday, January 21, 2006

Common dolphin found dead

A common dolphin was found dead near Millway Beach yesterday, but experts think the animal was not linked to a group of 10 dolphins that stranded over the weekend at Rock Harbor in Orleans.

Cape Cod Stranding Network Director Katie Touhey said it was likely that the dolphin found yesterday off George Street had stranded with a group of other dolphins in Wellfleet on Dec. 30, 2005, and was not discovered until the tide pushed it to Barnstable Harbor.

The dolphin had been dead about a week.

Since early December, several mass strandings have kept the stranding network busy .
Nine pilot whales and 24 common dolphins stranded on beaches from Barnstable to Wellfleet after a freak storm blew across Cape Cod Dec. 9, 2005.

Five common dolphins stranded in Wellfleet on Dec. 30, and four were released in Provincetown.
And this weekend, 10 common dolphins stranded at Rock Harbor. Five had to be euthanized.
Necropsy specimens and data from the last stranding have been sent to the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.

''I think it's going to be a busy season,'' Touhey said of the group strandings. ''I don't think we'll be lucky enough to say this will be the last one of these.''

Quick "Facts about Dolphins"