Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Beached dolphin is recovering

A dolphin that was found stranded on Vero Beach is now in rehabilitation at Mote Marine Laboratory in Sarasota.

The female Atlantic bottlenose dolphin was found stranded at daybreak Sunday by residents of Castaway Cove in Vero Beach, according to a Mote Marine Laboratory press release.

Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute, based in Fort Pierce, responded to the stranding and transported the dolphin 3½ hours to Mote's Dolphin and Whale Hospital for treatment.

"The animal was calm and secure, but was high on the beach away from the tideline," said Malcolm deSieyes of Harbor Branch.

The dolphin was suffering from respiratory problems, gastric distress and was slightly overheated, said Dr. Charles Manire, Mote's chief veterinarian.

Early blood work indicated liver problems as well, Manire said.

Mote staff and volunteers spent Sunday night in a rehab tank supporting the dolphin, which they named Castaway.

Support will be necessary until she is able to swim and breathe on her own, the press release stated.

The dolphin was eating, but Mote staff is monitoring the amount of food until the stomach problem improves.

Quick "Facts about Dolphins"