Dolphin dies after being trapped in Manhasset Bay

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Officers and a civilian transport a dolphin to deeper waters in Manhasset Bay. (Photo courtesy of the Nassau County Police Department)

Members of several fire departments and the Nassau County Police Department’s Marine Bureau could not save a dolphin trapped in shallow water just off Manhasset Bay earlier this week.

On Tuesday, March 30, a 911 call reported that a dolphin was trapped in a muddy area of the bay just off of Plandome Heights. Officers from the Marine Bureau and the nearby 6th Squad responded, determining that it was stuck due to low tide.

Four officers and a civilian then placed the dolphin on a kayak and walked it approximately 300 feet through knee-deep mud to an open area of water, then placed the dolphin in the water and made their way back to shore. The water was deep enough for the mammal to swim, according to police.

Members from the Great Neck Alert and Manhasset-Lakeville Fire Departments were on a small boat and attempted to guide the dolphin to deeper water. Failing this, a representative from the state Department of Environmental Conservation and New York Marine Rescue Center in Riverhead responded to evaluate the dolphin and found that it was underweight at 220 pounds and was too sick to swim in local waters, and it died shortly thereafter.

Two officers who had helped place the dolphin on a kayak suffered multiple lacerations on their feet and were transported to an area hospital for treatment.

The Atlantic Marine Conservation Society of Hampton Bays will perform a necropsy on the animal.

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