NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - A male juvenile dolphin was rescued from a Grand Isle beach Monday, according to the Audubon Nature Institute.
A spokesperson for the Audubon Institute says the two-year-old dolphin likely became stranded due to severe weather a few days ago.
The dolphin was transported to Audubon Aquatic Center in New Orleans and is currently undergoing evaluation and treatment.
Biologists from the Louisiana Dept. of Wildlife and Fisheries first responded to the report of the dolphin on Grand Isle Beach. Based on initial observations, the 6.5-foot-long dolphin, estimated to be about 2 years old, was responsive.
"We had a short window to diagnose whether the animal could be released or brought back to the AAC for treatment," said Audubon's Stranding and Rescue Coordinator Gabriella Vazquez. "He was lethargic and had short, shallow breaths. We attempted a soft release in the surf, but he showed no initiative to swim back into the Gulf. Ultimately, we determined he needed to be brought to the AAC for rehabilitation."
Upon arriving at the AAC, the Audubon veterinarian team treated the dolphin and determined that he had enough strength to swim on his own. The dolphin is currently undergoing testing and observation by Audubon staff to determine a prognosis.