Wildlife rescue stories always tug at the heartstrings. From chimps seeing the sunshine, to seals exploring the local town, helping animals in distress is as rewarding as it is tricky. Never more so than when dealing with marine life, as the latest rescue of two dolphins after more than two years has revealed.
Thought to have been pushed into an inland pond by the rising flood waters and effects of Hurricane Ida in 2021, a female dolphin and her calf were then trapped as the flood waters receded in the pond near Grand Isle, Louisiana, with no way back into the sea.
Fortunately the pool had adequate salinity and fish supply to support the two dolphins for the last couple of years. Wildlife experts always planned to move the pair, but were waiting for the little calf to be old enough to survive the rescue operation. The team from the Audubon Coastal Wildlife Network had monitored the calf for more than a year to assess the perfect time to move the mother and daughter duo, they wrote in a post on Facebook.
On June 17 the rescue took place, with a slew of volunteers helping the dolphins onto mats before transporting them into a truck. In a video posted on their Facebook page, the team can be seen sponging the dolphins and spraying them to keep their skin wet, before the pair are released back into the Gulf of Mexico.
In the Facebook post the Audubon team stress that strandings of marine animals, such as these dolphins and turtles, in waterways where they wouldn’t normally be seen is a relatively common occurrence after extreme weather events and should be handled by trained professionals to ensure the best outcome.