Dead dolphin at Emu Bay preserved for research

An elderly common botttlenose dolphin washed up, deceased at Emu Bay on Kangaroo Island on Thursday, April 11.

The dolphin was found on Thursday morning and rangers from the Department for Environment and Water attended the scene.

Assisting was ranger Paul Jennings, who recently was instrumental in freeing a humpback whale tangled in a lobster pot off Victor Harbor. 

The dolphin body has been placed into a freezer by rangers and will be transported to the lab of research scientist Dr Catherine Kemper at the SA Museum.

An autopsy will be conducted and any findings added to the base of knowledge about the State's dolphins.

Tony Bartram from Kangaroo Island / Victor Harbor Dolphin Watch is also aware of the discovery.

The female dolphin measured 2.2 metres and appeared to be quite advanced in age based on how worn down its teeth were, he said.

The dolphin also had a number of lesions or wounds, that are suspected to be possible ulcers.

Although in the process of healing, these lesions indicated the dolphin was not in the best of health prior to its death, possibly due to its advanced age. 

The distinct fin markings of the deceased dolphin from Emu Bay will be compared to the catalogue of known dolphins kept by KI / VH Dolphin Watch. 

In a story with a much happier ending, there were reports of a bottlenose dolphin being stranded in the shallows at Western Cove on Nepean Bay a few weeks ago.

A local resident attempted to assist the dolphin and a ranger attended.

That dolphin was able to swim away in the rising tide and has not been seen since.