Page last updated at 17:41 GMT, Tuesday, 17 March 2009

Stranded baby dolphin found dead

Man helping dolphins. Photo courtesy of Jim Guthrie
The dolphins first became stranded at Broughty Ferry

A baby dolphin which was rescued by members of the public after becoming stranded with its mother in Dundee has died, sea life experts believe.

The calf got stuck at Broughty Ferry on 11 February but was refloated by two passing builders. Wildlife rescuers then helped its mother.

However, a calf was found in the Tay off Riverside Drive on 27 February and was taken away for examination.

Animal medics now believe it is "highly likely" that it was the same calf.

'Mother's milk'

The calf was a common dolphin, which despite its name is rarely seen near the shore of the east coast of Scotland.

An examination found that it had several small pieces of wood in its stomach, suggesting it would have been hungry and eating whatever it could.

Elaine Roft, a British Divers Marine Life medic, said: "This one was dependent on its mother and it has strayed away from mum, or mum's sensed that it's been ill and she's left it.

"They're learning to feed, so it would have picked up anything it could've.

"It should still have been on its mother's milk so hasn't really learned to hunt for fish or anything, which is quite sad."

Ms Roft warned people not to try to refloat stranded whales or dolphins themselves, but to phone for expert help and advice.

She added that, although it did not appear to be a factor in this case, it was especially important not to get water into the blow hole as the animal could drown.

Print Sponsor

Mass whale stranding in Tasmania
02 Mar 09 |  Asia-Pacific
Dolphin mother and calf rescued
11 Feb 09 |  Tayside and Central
Whale stranded in loch found dead
21 Oct 08 |  Highlands and Islands
Family find 'murdered' porpoise
06 Sep 08 |  Tayside and Central
Beached sperm whale dies in firth
06 Aug 08 |  Highlands and Islands
Clyde dolphin 'unlikely to live'
23 Jun 08 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West
Dolphins die after mass stranding
09 Jun 08 |  Cornwall

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2019 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific