Gulf Dolphins Slideshow

Warning: some of these images show injured or dead dolphins, which may be disturbing to some viewers.

Following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, numerous dolphins were documented encountering oil, such as those in this photo from July 2010.
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Following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, numerous dolphins were documented encountering oil, such as those in this photo from July 2010.
Sarasota FB20
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May 2010: FB20, a 21-year-old adult male, is measured by Dr. Randall Wells, senior conservation scientist for the Chicago Zoological Society, during a dolphin health assessment in Sarasota Bay, FL. FB20, a long-term resident of Sarasota Bay, has been observed since birth and has continued to exhibit good health and robust body condition.
Y12 August 2011
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Aug 2011: Veterinarians collect a urine sample from Y12, a 16-year-old adult male bottlenose dolphin caught near Grand Isle, LA. Y12’s health evaluation determined that he was significantly underweight, anemic, and had indications of liver and lung disease. After the evaluation and attachment of VHF and satellite-linked tags, Y12 was released.
Measuring a Dolphin
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Aug 2011: A Barataria Bay dolphin is measured as part of a Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA) health assessment.
Measuring a Dolphin's Fin
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Aug 2011: Researchers measure the fin of a Barataria Bay dolphin during NRDA health assessments.
Aug 2011: A Barataria Bay dolphin’s tail is measured during NRDA health assessments.
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Aug 2011: A Barataria Bay dolphin’s tail is measured during NRDA health assessments.
Guiding a Dolphin
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Aug 2011: A Barataria Bay dolphin is guided during a health assessment.
Aug 2011: Veterinarians collect samples from a Barataria Bay dolphin.
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Aug 2011: Veterinarians collect samples from a Barataria Bay dolphin.
Aug 2011: Veterinarians collect samples from a Barataria Bay dolphin.
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Aug 2011: Veterinarians collect samples from a Barataria Bay dolphin.
Aug 2011: A veterinarian performs an ultrasound to assess a Barataria Bay dolphin’s health.
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Aug 2011: A veterinarian performs an ultrasound to assess a Barataria Bay dolphin’s health.
Photographing a Dolphin
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Aug 2011: A Barataria Bay dolphin is photographed by researchers.
Y12 Jan 2012
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Jan 2012: The carcass of Y12, one of the Barataria Bay dolphins closely studied by NRDA researchers, was recovered on Grand Isle Beach, January 31, 2012. The visible ribs, prominent vertebral processes and depressions along the back are signs of extreme emaciation. A necropsy was performed and samples were collected to help determine cause of death and potential contributing factors.
Gulf of Mexico Cetacean Strandings by Region
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Number of strandings by region compared to 10 year historical average with 95% confidence limits (the historical averages include data from previous Gulf of Mexico UMEs). The Florida Panhandle includes Franklin through Escambia counties, and the Florida west coast includes Wakulla through Monroe counties.
BMI Graph Males wY12
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Body mass index (BMI), a function of mass and length, is plotted against dolphin age. Solid lines classify BMI as normal (between lines) or underweight (below lower line). Blue squares represent male dolphins sampled in Sarasota Bay, FL; red circles represent male dolphins sampled in Barataria Bay and surrounding waters.

Download high resolution versions of these photos from NOAA Fisheries’ Flickr set.

Study by NOAA and Partners Shows Some Gulf Dolphins Severely Ill

Gulf Dolphin Questions and Answers