GULF SHORES, Ala. (WKRG) — A bottlenose dolphin calf was found dead on March 25 in Gulf Shores with multiple stab wounds.

The Alabama Marine Mammal Stranding Network (AMMSN) says the young male was only a few days old. The mutilated carcass led to an extensive postmortem examination.

Veterinarians concluded the dolphin likely died from pneumonia and was already dead before being stabbed.

Bottlenose dolphins are known to populate Gulf Coast waters. Experts say you should report a stranded marine animal, but you should not mess with one.

Fortunately, in this case, we were able to determine the cause of death despite the mutilation, but tampering with a carcass or altering the scene can make our job more difficult.”

ALMMSN Veterinarian Dr. Jennifer Bloodgood.

You can read the full report on the Dauphin Island Sea Lab website.


If you find a sick, injured or deceased marine mammal in the Southeast US, please call 1-877-WHALE-HELP (942-5343) as soon as possible. Never push a stranded animal back into the water because it can prevent trained responders and veterinarians from providing timely care. 

Anyone with information regarding the harassment of or harm to a marine mammal is asked to call the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration’s Law Enforcement hotline at 1-800-853-1964.