[MARINE_BIOLOGY_INTERNATIONAL] Dolphin dies after collision



Brookfield Zoo dolphin dies after apparently colliding with other dolphin

By Carlos Sadovi

Tribune reporter

6:49 PM CDT, September 5, 2011


Nea a 4-year-old female Atlantic bottlenose dolphin set to perform today at an afternoon Brookfield Zoo dolphin show died after it apparently collided with another dolphin minutes before the show took place, officials said.

The dolphin underwent a necropsy to determine the cause of death and preliminary results indicated that she had sustained a fractured skull, according to a press release issued by the Chicago Zoological Society, which manages the zoo.

The incident happened just before the 1 p.m. show. Marine mammal staff heard a loud pop and responded immediately, officials said. The staff noticed that the female dolphin appeared injured and trainers jumped into the water and attempted to save the dolphin by performing CPR, officials said.

Veterinary staff arrived in less than 10 minutes to assist but the dolphin remained unresponsive.

The "freak incident" was not witnessed by anyone but according to the necropsy officials believe that Nea had sustained her fatal injuries when she accidentally collided with another dolphin, officials said. There was no indication that the other dolphin was injured.

Nea arrived at Brookfield Zoo a year ago with Tatum, a 7-year-old dolphin. Both dolphins had integrated "very well" with the other dolphins.

The shows were canceled today but are expected to be held Tuesday with the zoo's remaining six dolphins.


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