The recent death of a young dolphin found with trash in its stomach highlights the need to reduce single-use plastic and to not release balloons into the environment, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission says.
The emaciated and very sick young female rough-toothed dolphin was found stranded on Fort Myers Beach on April 23. After a necropsy, officials found in her stomach, a piece of a balloon and two plastic bags.
Biologists from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission conducted a necropsy of the months-old dolphin two days after it washed up on the beach.
“Although a significant finding, there are many additional factors to consider, such as underlying illness, disease and maternal separation, before a final cause of stranding and death for the dolphin can be determined,” FWC said in a Facebookstatement.
Samples collected during necropsy will be sent for analysis to help with this determination.”
When the dolphin was found, she was emaciated and in poor health, weighing 111 pounds and measuring 5 feet 7 inches in length.
The biologist decided to “humanely euthanize” the dolphin, according to the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.
This finding highlights the need to reduce single use plastic and to not release balloons into the environment.
Please remember that marine mammals strand for a reason, often the animals are sick or injured,” the FWC said.