Dolphin Death Toll Reaches Six-Dozen

Four more federal investigators were brought in Friday to help research what's killing so many of the marine mammals. More than sixty dead dolphins washed ashore between Gulf and Bay counties in the last week.

Spring breakers woke up to dolphin carcasses outside the Fontainebleau motel on Panama City Beach. Another came ashore outside the Ramada Inn on Front Beach Rd. An early morning walker discovered a dolphin beached on Mexico Beach and biologists found four more just east of there along the St. Joseph peninsula at Port St. Joe.

Laura Engleby, a National Marine Fisheries biologist is one of the scientists puzzled by the large number of dying dolphins. "We're still trying to figure out the scope of this die-off. Everyday we've been having animals come in and we just want to make sure that we account for all of them and we get samples from all of them."

Several of the dolphin carcasses in the water or on the sand have been marked by the biologists with a flag on the tail or with a painted number. Officials say they don't need to be notified about the animal if it has been marked.


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