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Dolphin carcass washes ashore Mumbai’s Marine Drive; 7th since June

This is the eighth such case over the past three months, the 13th marine mammal death in the city this year, and 94th since 2016.

mumbai Updated: Aug 22, 2018 09:10 IST
dolphin death in Mumbai,dolphin carcass at Marine Drive,mumbai
This is the 13th marine mammal death in Mumbai this year.(HT Photo )

The carcass of a three-and-a-half foot juvenile dolphin washed ashore at Marine Drive, opposite Marine Lines station on Tuesday evening.

This is the seventh such case over the past three months, the 13th marine mammal death in the city this year, and 94th since 2016.

The state mangrove cell said the species was an Indian Ocean Humpback Dolphin. “The carcass washed ashore around 5pm during high tide. We reached the spot and found that the marine animal had died sometime back at sea as the body was decomposed,” said Makarand Ghodke, assistant conservator of forest, state mangrove cell. “An autopsy cannot be carried out on such a carcass and it was buried at Mulund.”

He added the forest department was worried as the cases were rapidly increasing. HT had reported on Thursday that after numerous cases of dead marine animals along the Mumbai coastline, the Maharashtra forest department will begin a five-year-long study using noise monitoring instruments at sea. The project is expected to begin in November, which will study the population, behaviour and threats to marine animals.

“We are hopeful that the study will throw some light on these cases that have seen a significant increase over the past three months,” said Ghodke.

A marine biologist from the National Institute of Oceanography said that a field study needs to be initiated at the earliest. “There seems to be some toxicity along the Mumbai coastline that has led to dolphin deaths due to respiratory infection. The state needs to send divers and scientists to investigate within the 12 nautical mile radius to study this,” the official said.

HT reported on August 19 that two marine mammal carcasses — a baby dolphin and a finless porpoise — washed ashore at Bandra Bandstand. The results from their autopsy are still awaited.

First Published: Aug 22, 2018 09:08 IST