Peru investigates deaths of almost 900 dolphins

Apr 19, 2012
Experts measure a dead dolphin on a beach on the northern coast of Peru, close to Chiclayo on April 11
Experts measure a dead dolphin on a beach on the northern coast of Peru, close to Chiclayo, some 750 km north of Lima, on April 11. Officials in Peru said Thursday they are investigating what caused the deaths of nearly 900 dolphins that have washed up on its northern coast over the past four months.

Officials in Peru said Thursday they are investigating what caused the deaths of nearly 900 dolphins that have washed up on its northern coast over the past four months.

Authorities said they suspect a virus may be responsible, but are awaiting test results to know whether they can rule out or other factors in the deaths of the marine mammals.

"So far that's the most likely hypothesis," Deputy Environment Minister Gabriel Quijandria told local radio.

Ninety-five percent of the deaths affected bottlenosed dolphins, which since January have washed up along a 170-kilometer (100-mile) stretch of coastline.

"It's not the first time this has happened. There have been other instances in Peru, Mexico and the United States," Quijandria added.

In those cases, he said, the deaths were attributed to outbreaks of highly infectious , related to ailments such as rinderpest, measles and distemper, an easily transmittable disease affecting dogs.

Explore further: US plans widespread seismic testing of sea floor

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Scientists scrutinize rise in baby dolphin deaths

Feb 26, 2011

Scientists are trying to figure out what killed 53 bottlenose dolphins - many of them babies - so far this year in the Gulf of Mexico, as five more of their carcasses washed up Thursday in Louisiana, Mississippi ...

Gulf of Mexico dolphin deaths reported

Nov 08, 2005

Scientists concerned by bottlenose dolphin deaths in the Gulf of Mexico have reportedly asked for the marine mammal equivalent of a disaster declaration.

Dolphin population at risk in Britain

May 16, 2007

A report from the Wildlife Trusts and an animal charity has found that commercial fishing in Britain is placing the regional dolphin population at risk.

Recommended for you

US plans widespread seismic testing of sea floor

2 hours ago

(AP)—The U.S. government is planning to use sound blasting to conduct research on the ocean floor along most of the East Coast, using technology similar to that which led to a court battle by environmentalists in New Jersey.

Fire ecology manipulation by California native cultures

2 hours ago

Before the colonial era, 100,000s of people lived on the land now called California, and many of their cultures manipulated fire to control the availability of plants they used for food, fuel, tools, and ritual. Contemporary ...

User comments : 0