Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Sad dolphin story!

CHILDREN from the Samanai Primary School on Siassi Island, Morobe province, thought the cry was coming from a woman who was in trouble at sea.They left the playground and ran to the mouth of the Ber Creek where they found the bodies of 24 dead dolphins washed ashore in the night.What sounded like the wailing of a woman was in fact made by one of the surviving dolphins.

The children saw it swimming frenetically around, as if wailing for its mates.The school children were shocked over their discovery and took their teacher to the site, who told them that they were dolphins.Villagers from Siassi Island, who were in Lae recently, told the sad tale of the dolphins yesterday, especially of the surviving dolphin and how they tried to save it but to no avail.The villagers said they tried chasing it back into the sea but the dolphin would not leave its mates so they had to tie it up and pull it by boat into the sea and release it.But the dolphin kept coming back until it died.

“I can confirm the death of the large number of dolphins. I had some of the meat from the dolphins. A lot of the people, including the students from the primary school and the Siassi High School ate the meat,” one of the villagers said.The villagers, who want to remain anonymous, said it was only later that they realised the dolphins were poisoned.

Siassi leader and former provincial assembly speaker Issac Narol also confirmed yesterday that his family ate the meat of the dead dolphins.Mr Narol said the PNG Forest Authority and a logging company should not deny the deaths of the dolphins, the destruction to the environment and the pollution caused as a result of the logging activities in Block 2 of the Umboi Timber area.

A Lae based lawyer wrote to The National to confirm the deaths of the dolphins.“I refer to your report and confirm the huge number of dolphins dying helplessly in Siassi Island.“I am of the view that this matter is serious and needs to be investigated by Forest and Environment and Conservation Departments,” the lawyer, who is from the affected area, said.

Quick "Facts about Dolphins"