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Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center investigating multiple dolphin deaths and strandings along the coast

An aquarium spokesperson said the deaths are likely due to last weekend's storms and not the result of human interaction.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — The Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center is investigating the deaths of five dolphins who were found in shallow waters along Virginia’s coast.

The aquarium said the deaths involved what are known as “common dolphins.” The species is not typically found in shallow or inshore waters. 

Aquarium biologists believe the deaths are not the result of interactions with humans. Aquarium spokeswoman Mackenzie Di Nardo told The Virginian-Pilot that weather likely played a role following last weekend’s storms.

The aquarium had received several calls for sightings and strandings. Locations included the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay and the bayside of Virginia’s Eastern Shore.

The aquarium also found four live dolphins stranded in shallow creeks and about 10 dolphins moving freely.

Credit: Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center
Staff for the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center attend to a stranded dolphin on Monday, March 14, 2022, along a creek near the Chesapeake Bay on Virginia’s Eastern Shore.

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