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Humpback whale underwater

Climate giants – how whales can help save the world

We know that whales, dolphins and porpoises are amazing beings with complex social and family...
Black Sea common dolphins © Elena Gladilina

The dolphin and porpoise casualties of the war in Ukraine

Rare, threatened subspecies of dolphins and porpoises live in the Black Sea along Ukraine's coast....
WDC's Ed Fox, Chris Butler-Stroud and Carla Boreham take a message from the ocean to parliament

Taking a message from the ocean to parliament

It's a sad fact that whales and dolphins don't vote in human elections, but I...
Minke whale © Ursula Tscherter - ORES

The whale trappers are back with their cruel experiment

Anyone walking past my window might have heard my groan of disbelief at the news...
Boto © Fernando Trujillo

Meet the legendary pink river dolphins

Botos don't look or live like other dolphins. Flamingo-pink all over with super-skinny snouts and...
Tokitae in captivity

Talking to TUI – will they stop supporting whale and dolphin captivity?

Last Thursday I travelled to Berlin for a long-anticipated meeting with TUI senior executives. I...

Earth Day Q&A with Waipapa Bay Wines’ marketing director, Fran Draper

We've been partnered with Waipapa Bay Wines since 2019 so for this year's Earth Day,...
Orcas at the seabed

The secrets of orca beach life

Rubbing on smooth pebbles is a generations-old cultural tradition for a particular group of orcas...

Dolphin deaths report released by South Australian Govt. Working Group

The Inter-Agency Marine Life Deaths Working Group has released its first report on the recent spate of dolphin and fish deaths in Gulf St. Vincent in South Australia (SA) and associated waters. Of the 34 dolphins found, six had been tested for morbillivirus by the time that the report was released, and the results were positive. This is the first time that this particular virus has been found in SA waters.

Morbillivirus is thought to cause suppression of the immune system that allows other diseases, such as fungus and parasites to thrive. Younger dolphins are particularly susceptible, and comprised the vast majority of the dead dolphins found.

Issues that the report has not been able to address include how did the virus enter SA waters, or if it was already here, and what conditions caused it to suddenly impact on the local population. It is also unknown whether the local population will now acquire immunity to the virus.

Luckily, the virus has yet to impact on Adelaide’s Port River dolphin population, with the only death during the March/ April period being a young calf known as Mimo. Initial examination of Mimo indicated the death to be caused by a physical defect. Mimo has yet to be tested for morbillivirus.

The report is attached.