Rescue team’s Katie Moore to brief Congress in wake of unprecedented dolphin strandings

Two of the stranded dolphins from yesterday's rescue.This has been an exceptional stranding season for us - having already responded to 102 dolphins since January 12th . The first day of February brought even more dolphins to Cape Cod's shores. Yesterday morning we got a call reporting that 6 dolphins were about to strand in the bay in Brewster.

When we arrived at the beach about a half hour later, we found the 6 lying on a sand bank about three quarters of a mile from the beach and 3 more trapped in very shallow water bringing the total number of dolphins needing rescue to 9. With the help of trained volunteers, we extricated the dolphins from the sand flats and safely transferred them from the beach to our rescue trailers where we checked the health of the animals to see if we would be able to attempt release.

All nine animals looked good and we made a plan to release them out to open waters on the outer Cape. Based on the winds and tides, we decided that Head of the Meadow Beach in Truro would be the ideal location to give these animals the best chance of survival. At about 6:15 pm, we were finally able to get all of  these wayward dolphins back in the water where they belong. We satellite tagged one of the animals and it seems to be moving very well. The tag transmitted at 8:47 am today and was 10 miles off shore on the Wellfleet/Truro border on the ocean side.

This tells us that it swam straight off the beach after release, which is a very good sign. Yesterday's stranding brings the total to 111 Common dolphins that have stranded since January 12th with 30 of those being successfully released due to the tireless efforts of the entire International Fund for Animal Welfare Marine Mammal Rescue and Research staff and volunteers.

This has been the largest stranding of a single species on record in the Northeast Region of the U.S., as such, I’m heading down to Washington D.C. right now to testify before the US House Natural Resources Sub-committee to both brief them on what we know and also to ask for help.

Stay tuned.

--KM

Comments: 15

 
Anonymous
2 years ago

Hi Katie,
I'm not a scientist, so I guess you could say this is sort of a fan letter. Remeber your family from both Milford and Matttapoisett. I would guess Mattapoisett is where it all began, exploring all the estuaries and tidal marshes back when you were just a young kid. Looks like you found a passion and never looked back. Personally, it really is a great story because my brothers and I did the same thing, exploring around the marshes etc when we were kids. Since you make the headlines it's been fascinating following your career and the work you do. All this stuf is so very important. Developing a better understanding about both the long and short term impact to our environment can't be overstated, not to mention the preservation of such beautiful marine mamals. I'm certain so much of this comes down to funding. Hope congress is listening. Best wishes and good luck with everything.

 
Anonymous
2 years ago

I am an ecologist up in Toronto, Canada. Based on what is happening with climate change, I suspect the melting of the permafrost up in northern Ontario and Quebec and Labrador, due to the excess CO2 emissions from car use in North America carried north on the westerlies (air currents 1 mile up) into the tundra, is melting the permafrost and that meltwater (with added methane which sinks) is carried along the Labrador current that flows south along the coastline and getting trapped on the north side of Cape Cod. If you test the water temperature at the normal edge of where the Labrador current and Gulf Stream meet, I bet that the dolphins are running into frigid water that is moving southward along the coastline causing thermal shock, hypothermia, and also anoxia (low blood oxygen) and methane poisoning of the dolphins. I suggest the Coast Guard be notified to check with limnologists for methane bubbles and oxygen levels as well as temperature along the coastline.

Natalie Helferty
nhelferty@gmail.com

 
Anonymous
2 years ago

Katle record sounds of their Pod in deep water and play it to the stranded
JamesHarold Hart
Stanford@citlink.net

 
Anonymous
2 years ago

To Katle Moore
I keep thinking about maybe useing recorded sounds of part of the pod that hasnt beached and playing it maybe from a booyee maybe the ones that are getting beached could hear their pod members that are in deep water perhaps they will re-adjust their bearings.

Do we have any records of past beachings that we could compare to the suns solar flares? The people in the know have written some great articles about their intelligence. Anything that the workers who have trained dolphines, have found of frequencies could shed some light on the ,matter .

What about playing sounds also of dolphines in captivity could we compare the sounds of the dolphines in trouble and see what sounds that they make perhaps it could shed some new light and hope to the ones that keep getting stranded.

It would be very interesting to see if any response was made from pod members and the stranded ones. Or perhaps record members of their Pod and play it to them
.
Gods speed on the solution
James Harold Hart
Stanford@citlink.net

 
Anonymous
2 years ago

Thank you, Katie! These beauties need you and your team.

 
Anonymous
2 years ago

 

Thank you so much for your love and tireless efforts, Katie. Our wildlife needs and deserves our care and protection. We are blessed with your strength. Thank you for all you do.

The Leso Family

 
Anonymous
2 years ago

it is my beliefe that the sonar on either navel or fising vessels are causing this. at this time of year fishing vessels are working the stellwagon bank area and could be contributing to this.

 
Anonymous
2 years ago

Katie, thank you to you and your team. Do you have an idea of why the dolphins stranded?

And this has not been a national news story. Is this because "only" 3 dolphins died?

 
Anonymous
2 years ago

Katie

We were so fortunate to watch your team at work this evening at Herring Cove, releasing two beautiful dolphins into the sea. Perhaps that was you working in the trailer? Your team was very impressive -- it was moving to witness their humility and compassion as well as how much joy they seemed to get out of working for something larger than themselves.

The ones rescued tonight were Nos. 123 and 124. Is there any way of us knowing whether they made it out safely?

John and Bobbie

 
Anonymous
2 years ago

Wonder if this has something to do with BP spill, not just the toxic oil but also the tons of oil dispersant chemicals they sprayed to sink the oil. Both oil and dispersant chemicals are most likely in the food chain, and dolphins are part of that food chain. Something to think about and also ask Obama administration for an update on completion of clean up; still not totally cleaned up and we're going on two years in April!

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Experts

Senior Program Advisor
Senior Program Advisor
Brian Sharp, Emergency Relief Officer, Stranding Coordinator
Emergency Relief Officer, Stranding Coordinator
Dr. Ian Robinson, Vice President, Programs & Int'l Operations
Vice President, Programs & Int'l Operations
IFAW Veterinarian
Gail A'Brunzo, IFAW Wildlife Rescue Manager
Wildlife Rescue Manager, IFAW HQ
Veterinarian, DVM, PhD
Veterinarian, DVM, PhD
Katie Moore, Program Director, Animal Rescue
Program Director, Animal Rescue
Manager, Animal Rescue-Disasters
Vivek Menon, Director of IFAW partner, Wildlife Trust of India
Regional Director, South Asia