Baby Dolphin Die-Off in Gulf Grows
Officials say it's too soon to blame the oil spill
By Kevin Spak, Newser User
Posted Mar 3, 2011 12:56 PM CST
Institute for Marine Mammal Studies veterinary technician Wendy Hatchett lifts a dead bottlenose dolphin that was found on Ono Island, Ala., Feb. 22, 2011.   (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

(Newser) – More and more young bottlenose dolphins are turning up dead in the Gulf, and scientists aren’t entirely sure why. The number of dead dolphins has swelled to 80, according to National Geographic, with about half of them being calves. Speculation is running rampant that the deaths are connected to the BP oil spill. “Everybody wants to jump to that conclusion,” says one NOAA official, “but at this point in time, it’s too early to tell.”

Scientists think some of the calves may have actually been premature stillbirths, because dolphins typically give birth around March or April. “That’s one part of the investigation that we’re going to be looking at very carefully,” the official said. “We’ll methodically score each animal … to determine if, in fact, it was an aborted calf.”

More From Newser
My Take on This Story
To report an error on this story,
notify our editors.
Your Take
18% of people agree
that it's Scary
Check Out Another Scary Story
You Might Like
Showing 3 of 10 comments
Mar 3, 2011 6:32 PM CST
It's all GWB's fault!
Mar 3, 2011 3:36 PM CST
Ya mean if you dump millions of gallons of oil into a body of water it will kill animals. Gee who would have guessed. Multiple independent lab tests are showing gulf seafood to be loaded down with petroleum (see link). Coincidentally the "official studies" have shown it to be fine and we know the officials would never lie to us.
Mar 3, 2011 2:54 PM CST
Big oil could drill a 1000 wells in the gulf,and it would not reduce the price at the pump one penny!