Featured Image Credit:Mary Pringle/Post&Courier
Just days after ringing in the New Year, a baby dolphin was found on the shores of Isle of Palms in South Carolina. The 1-year-old dolphin was about 6-foot-long and had fishing line wrapped around its jaw. The dolphin’s jaw was wrapped so tightly that his jaw was nearly torn off. A hook was also found in its stomach.
Wayne McFee, a scientist from the National Ocean Service marine mammal stranding program, commented, “The animal was emaciated, so even though it had eaten recently, it was not getting the nourishment to survive.”
According to the article covered by the Post & Courier, “Dozens of bottlenose dolphin wash up dead each year; in 2015 the number was 54. Causes include disease and boat strikes. But one or two of them per year have been tangled or swallowed fishing line. Careless anglers will stream out line snarled on a reel and discard it into the water, or cut loose line when a hook is trapped.”
Isle of Palms resident, Mary Pringle, is called out to the beach four to five times per year, as part of her responsibilities as a volunteer with the marine mammal stranding program.