First dolphin rescued and released near Grand Isle thriving in the wild
GRAND ISLE - Coastal Wildlife Network leaders say the first dolphin to be rescued, rehabilitated and released off the coast of Louisiana is doing well in the wild.
Post-release monitoring included satellite tag data along with visual observations conducted by staff over the six weeks following the 6.5-foot-long juvenile dolphin’s release back into the Gulf of Mexico.
On Oct. 26, 2015, biologists from LDWF said they responded to a private citizen’s report of a live, stranded dolphin on Grand Isle Beach. Based on their initial evaluations, the dolphin was responsive but became stranded due to high water and rough seas associated with Hurricane Patricia.
The dolphin was transported to Freeport-McMoRan Audubon Species Survival Center in New Orleans where positive progress was made over the following months of evaluation and treatment. Named “Octavius” after the Audubon veterinarian taking care of him, the sea mammal was eventually able to swim on his own again. Finally, Octavius was given medical clearance after blood work and veterinary exams showed the animal had no indication of congenital defects or other medical issues that would hinder the dolphin’s ability to survive in the wild.
"It's been six weeks and he is doing everything a dolphin should be doing," said Audubon’s Stranding and Rescue Coordinator Gabriella Vazquez. "Results from monitoring appear to show that he is thriving and has a strong chance to survive in the wild."