Mass Mortality Events, Strandings of 260+ Dolphins Since February Along Gulf Coast

Mass Mortality Events, Strandings of 260+ Dolphins Since February Along Gulf Coast

Mass deaths of dolphins have occurred along the coastal regions of the Gulf of Mexico. Not just any region though. The main regions where the dolphins have been stranded and died are areas that were affected the most by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010. Other factors, including an excess of freshwater from the Mississippi, are also said to have contributed to the event.

Detailed coverage: Stranding of 261 dolphins, possibly linked to high Mississippi River, declared ‘unusual mortality event’ - NOLA.com, The Times-Picayune

The stranding of more than 261 bottlenose dolphins along the Gulf Coast from Louisiana to the Florida Panhandle since Feb. 1, with 98 percent of the dolphins being found dead, prompted NOAA Fisheries to declare an unusual mortality event on Friday.

More regarding the Unusual Mortality Event, declared by the NOAA's National Marine Fisheries Service - Southeast Region: https://wwl.radio.com/articles/more-260-dead-dolphins-found-along-gulf-coast

This declaration allows an investigative team to look into the high number of dolphin deaths stretching from Louisiana through the Florida panhandle.

Dr. Terri Rowles, NOAA Fisheries Coordinator, has issued a statement informing the public what to do if they come into contact with any stranded mammals.

There's a number of factors that well be looking at as part of this investigation, but its too early at this point to say what may be causing the mortalities, said Dr. Erin Fougeres with NOAA Fisheries Southeast Region.

The area where the dolphins have shown an increase of deaths includes the area where the Deepwater Horizon Explosion impacted the gulf in 2010.


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