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Île-de-Ré: massive stranding of several dolphins avoided in extremis

Île-de-Ré: massive stranding of several dolphins avoided in extremis

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Video length: 2 min.

Article written by
Y. Salaün, M. Millet, M. Reiller

France 3

France Televisions

A massive stranding of dolphins was narrowly avoided off the Île de Ré (Charente-Maritime) on Wednesday, September 8. The intervention of firefighters and scientists saved the majority of mammals. The animals got trapped as the sea receded.

At the Pointe du Grouin, in the town of Loix (Charente-Maritime), a group of dolphins ventured into shallow water rich in fish, very close to the coast. Wednesday, September 8, at the end of the morning, oyster farmers, who were working on their parks, gave the alert. “When we saw the sea go away and where they were, we thought they were going to run aground”, says Aurélie Rousseau.

Two firefighters’ zodiacs quickly arrived on site, as well as an FNSM star, the island’s eco-guards and researchers from the national stranding network, because the sea continued to recede. “A first group of eight individuals stranded alive and then the rest of the group was trapped, so a total of about twenty animals”, explains Eléonore Meheust, scientist from the Pelagis network.

Rescuers guided the dolphins out to sea, but unfortunately three of them did not survive, including two juveniles. They will be the subject of scientific analyzes. The causes of stranding are multiple. At Pointe du Grouin, it was hunger that could have caused the death of some fifteen animals.