Clearwater, FL (December 18, 2014) – Clearwater Marine Aquarium (CMA) successfully rehabilitated a female Atlantic spotted dolphin (Stenella frontalis) rescued July 4, 2014 on Redington Beach, Florida. The Marine Mammal Pathobiology Laboratory initially responded and rescued the dolphin from the surf where the dolphin was found tumbling in the waves unable to breathe properly. The dolphin was in critical condition, weak and malnourished.
Special Care and Rehabilitation
Since her intake into CMA, the medical care to rescue, stabilize, and restore the dolphin back to health required 24 hours a day, 7 days a week of care-giving. For the first 3 months, as the young dolphin was unable to swim consistently on its own, caregivers remained in the water holding her as needed. Caregivers gave her fluids every few hours to provide nourishment, and conducted medical tests on a daily and weekly basis. At rescue, the dolphin weighed 53 pounds and upon completing rehabilitation weighs a healthy 75 pounds.
FL Keys Dolphin Research
After six months of state-of-the-art rehabilitation, National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) declared the one-year-old Stenella dolphin as non-releasable because of her young age at stranding and lack of survival skills. NMFS selected Dolphin Research Center (DRC), a nonprofit marine mammal education and research facility in the Florida Keys, as her permanent residence. DRC has a large 24 dolphin group, providing multiple opportunities for pairings, as she is a unique species.
David Yates, CEO of CMA stated, “I am very proud of the dedicated team of staff and volunteers at Clearwater Marine Aquarium who have worked tirelessly to save this animal’s life and restore its health. We hope she has a long and healthy life.” CMA is a nonprofit working marine rescue center.