Bottlenose dolphins, swimming in a toxic cocktail, are suffering from nutrient pollution. Live dolphins exhibit extensive coverage of skin-eating fungal infections and other signs of suffering. Dead dolphins are found emaciated, with respiratory problems and brain lesions. In 2008, the dolphins of Florida's Indian River Lagoon faced a "marine mammal unusual mortality event." This year, it looks like another such event is underway.
The dolphins' home has become a toxic soup. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that the Indian River Lagoon gets more than 400,000 pounds of phosphorus per year. That's 200,000 more pounds than it can sustain. The lagoon receives over 3 millions pounds of nitrogen per year. This is over 1 million pounds in excess than can be absorbed. Excess nutrients lead to toxic algal blooms,"red tides," and dead zones where there is insufficient oxygen and fish die. Dolphin deaths were at their highest when Nitrogen (nutrients) and Chlorophyll A (algae) levels were at their highest.
“If you want a barometer of what’s going on in the lagoon, look at a dolphin,” says Megan Stolen, a research biologist at Hubbs-SeaWorld Research Institute pictured with dead dolphin.
When tragedy strikes, the Ocean River Institute listens locally and acts locally. We become global when you join with us to save dolphins. Add your own words to those who love dolphins.
Join the Ocean River Institute in writing to county commissioners to mandate a cap on phosphorus and nitrogen fertilizers.
1. Protect Florida wildlife from unregulated nitrogen and phosphorus over-fertilization and discharging.
2. Save the dolphins of Florida’s Indian River Lagoon – Stop fertilize caused deaths!
3. Dolphin deaths were at their highest when Nitrogen (nutrients) and Chlorophyll A (algae) levels are at their highest.
4. Take Action: http://www.oceanriver.org/IRLDolphinCampaign.php
5. Rescue Dolphins and Stop the Deadly Green Sliming of Florida Waterways.
Listen to Stephen McCulloch on Ocean River Shields of Achilles Internet Talk Radio: 29. Help Dolphins, Do Not Over-Fertilize, It Flows to the Sea!
Rob Talks with Capt Nan Beaver, Sunshine Wildlife, Stuart FL, on Ocean River Shields of Achilles Internet Talk Radio: 36. Promoting and Attaining a Healthy and Sustainable Indian River Lagoon
Dr Gary Bosart of the Georgia Aquarium talks about his decades of IRL dolphin research on Ocean River Shields of Achilles Internet Talk Radio: 28. Suffering Bottlenose Dolphins of Indian River Lagoon, Florida
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