Saturday, November 24, 2007

Dolphin perishes despite good samaritans' efforts

Desperate efforts to save an injured dolphin washed up on Langland Bay yesterday sadly failed. Local surfers, a vet and an RSPCA Inspector battled for hours to save the Atlantic white-striped dolphin, which was in extreme difficulty.Efforts were made to keep the dolphin in the water while its condition was assessed.

RSPCA spokeswoman Judith Haw said: "The prognosis wasn't very good from the start."A vet was called and with the RSPCA inspector kept it in the water for a couple of hours for the vet to check it and find out the best course of action. It was very underweight and it had a couple of superficial injuries to the body."Those on the scene contacted a marine veterinary expert and sent pictures to check the best thing to do.

Some at the scene believed the creature was a porpoise, but the RSPCA said it was a dolphin.Ms Haw said: "It was decided by the vets that it should be put to sleep."Quite often these type of animals come to the shore because they are ill and dying and this one wasn't in a good way."A lifeboat was on the scene and Swansea Coastguard attended.A Swansea Coastguard spokesman said: "There was a report of a porpoise injured at Langland Bay.

"There were a couple of surfers trying to assist it."Unfortunately it was quite badly injured and the RSPCA had to put it down."We called them and they turned up within the hour."We sent the coastguards down for the safety aspect."Langland Bay resident Fifi Davies said: "We get dolphins and porpoises washed up from time to time.

"Once there's one there everybody goes down to have a look."They try to save them but so often they have struggled and we have had very stormy seas."It's very sad."Sue Keates, who was at Langland, said: "He was 12ft from the edge of the water. To be honest, it looked as if it was hardly moving, the poor old thing."

Quick "Facts about Dolphins"