Officials thank Heart’s Delight-Islington for rescuing captive dolphins, but ice could get them in trouble
A local whale release and rescue group says a quick response from Heart’s Delight-Islington residents saved the lives of over a dozen captive dolphins, but fears ice conditions could cause more problems later.
Everett Sacrey of Whale Release & Strandings was on hand on the south side of Trinity Bay late Friday afternoon to assist with the rescue effort, but he wasn’t the first there. A team of residents from the community and area acted quickly, using skidoo sleds and heavy equipment to pull the dolphins out of the ice and move them to open water.
But difficult ice conditions made for a difficult rescue operation, he said. Sacrey and the rescue team decided the best way to transport the dolphins was to the nearby community of Whiteway, where there was more open water.
“Time was not on our side,” Sacrey told CBC News on Monday.
“It was a great reaction. And I think we, ie the local people, the volunteer fire brigade, the Department of Fisheries and Oceans and also our group, it really was the best response we could have gotten.”
Wayne Ledwell was also on the beach as part of Whale Release & Strandings. He says ice conditions improved slightly on Saturday, but several days of northeast winds this winter have moved pockets of sea ice around Trinity Bay.
Ledwell anticipates these conditions will continue, which could endanger dolphins or other animals in the bay.
“Trinity Bay is a big bay and there’s nobody out there on the ocean these days, especially when there’s ice. So who knows how many animals are in there or in other pens,” Ledwell told CBC radio The broadcast Monday.
Although at least three dolphins died over the weekend, the number would have been much higher had it not been for the residents.
“If they hadn’t done what they did, they would all have died there on the beach.” “It’s amazing to watch and be a part of, actually… There’s no script about it, it just happens so quickly.” And guys, you know, you have to act fast.”
If an animal trapped in the ice is discovered, residents should call Whale Release & Strandings or the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, Ledwell said.
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