Dolphin caught on buoy in Portland Port

Dolphin caught on buoy in Portland Port

Published by George Sharpe at 5:11pm 17th December 2019.

A dolphin, believed to be Danny, got caught on a buoy near to Castle Cove.

The Harbour Authority were called this morning at 09:30 to reports of a dolphin caught on a mooring buoy off Castle Cove.

Sandie Wilson from Portland Harbour Authority was on duty. She said:

"We didn't really know what to expect. So obviously we were going out to find out where it was. We could see in the distance where we thought it was. so as we got closer we did question where "is it going to be alive, or not?"

The dolphin was approached by staff from the Harbour Authority saying "We've come to help you"

"As we got closer we could see that he was moving so we were relieved to find out he was alive."

What ensued was a battle to keep the common bottlenose dolphin, believed to be Danny, calm while they unraveled the cord he'd been tangled in.

The line had been wrapped around his tail and he was stuck. Sandie says they approached carefully so as not to distress him.

Sandie said:

"We had to unravel this rope from his tail which involved a combination of cutting the rope in places and untangling the rope as well".

The dolphin was eventually freed from the buoy.

"He was quite exhausted"

After the dolphin was released from the ropes, instead of swimming off he stayed near the boat. 

Sandie said:

"I expected him to swim off, but actually he stayed around the RIB for a while. I think he was quite exhausted, we don't know how long he'd actually been there.

The dolphin gradually regained energy over the course of a few minutes and eventually swam off.

Portland Port is urging anyone who spots Danny the dolphin to exercise caution as solitary dolphin's can develop problematic behaviours that can increase risks for both humans and the dolphin.