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Fourth dead dolphin washes ashore on Mumbai beach in 3 weeks

Officials said the carcass of the six-foot-long Indian Ocean humpback dolphin was so decomposed that an autopsy could not be done to determine its cause of death.

mumbai Updated: Jul 30, 2018 16:05 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,Mumbai beach,dead dolphin
Local residents said the carcass was found covered with discarded plastic.(Photo: State forest department)

The carcass of yet another Indian Ocean humpback dolphin washed ashore at Juhu beach on Monday, making it the fourth such case this month.

It is the 10th carcass that has beached on Mumbai’s shores this year, and the 91st since 2016.

Forest officials said the six-foot-long carcass was so decomposed that an autopsy could not be done to determine the cause of death. “Our team buried the carcass at the beach itself. The dolphin might have died a while back at sea, but the number of cases have been too many this month,” said Prashant Deshmukh, range forest officer (west), state mangrove cell.

Local residents said the carcass was found covered with discarded plastic. “It could be that plastic might have got stuck on the dolphin’s body or that it may have led to its death,” said Amir Fasal, resident of Vile Parle who was at the beach when the dolphin washed ashore.

On Friday (July 27), an eight-foot dolphin of the same species had washed ashore at Girgaum Chowpatty. It was buried at Bhandup after a post-mortem. Earlier this month, two more carcasses washed ashore in Bandra, at Chimbai beach on July 11 and at Bandstand on July 12.

On July 16, HT had reported on post-mortem results from earlier cases that three dolphins had died because of respiratory infections. Marine biologists have suggested that coastal pollution could be the cause of these deaths.

“Pollution in the coastal waters is definitely playing a strong role in deteriorating the habitat of these marine mammals. We have raised the issue with the municipal corporation as well,” said Makarand Ghodke, assistant conservator of forest, state mangrove cell.

First Published: Jul 30, 2018 16:05 IST