A Dolphin Bullied by Other Dolphins Now Stuck in a Virginia Creek

  • A dolphin in Virginia was “probably” getting beat up by other dolphins, a marine scientist says.
  • It’s been living in a freshwater creek for three weeks. 
  • The scientist who has been trying to get it out told WAVY that dolphins are not supposed to be in freshwater.

A dolphin who may have been tormented by its peers has decided to retreat to a freshwater creek in Virginia, living there for weeks while avoiding his bullies. 

The sighting, first reported by local station WAVY, concerned scientist Alexander Costidis, who said that the dolphin “probably got beat up by other dolphins” in the ocean, prompting it to swim away to Bennett’s Creek in Suffolk, Virginia. 

Dolphins are known to be particularly vicious animals that harass other animals, like porpoises.

Costidis, a senior scientist at the Stranding Response Program at the Virginia Aquarium, told WAVY that teams have been monitoring the traumatized marine mammal, attempting to lure the animal from the river back into the ocean using “noise and kayaks.” 

So far, the dolphin has not been convinced. Costidis told the station that another option would be to capture and drag the dolphin using a net, but there is a risk that it could hurt the animal or the crews working to save it.

However, the clock is ticking to save the dolphin. Costidis said that lesions began to appear on its skin — a sign of freshwater skin disease, which could prove fatal.

“The freshwater is our biggest concern,” Costidis told WAVY. “Their skin is not designed to be in fresh water and eventually it starts to break down and let diseases start to, bacteria starts to colonize its skin.”

In January, 28 researchers in Clearwater, Florida formed a human chain to guide a dolphin back to the ocean after it got stuck in a freshwater creek. 

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