Marine Mammal Organization Reports Sick Dolphin Dies at Beach as Bystanders Try to ‘Ride it'

Rescue officials with Texas Marine Mammal Stranding Network urged beachgoers to "DO NOT PUSH" animals back to sea in a Facebook post

Texas Marine Mammal Stranding Network Facebook

On Sunday, April 10, a sick dolphin died on Quintana Beach in Brazoria County after several beachgoers tried to "ride it" animal experts said.

According to a Facebook post by the Texas Marine Mammal Stranding Network, the dolphin was seen being pushed back to the sea where several people attempted to swim and ride the sick mammal.

The Texas Marine Mammal Stranding Network released images in a Facebook post on Wednesday showing images of people surrounding and attempting to touch the dolphin.

The TMMSN described the dolphin's treatment as "harassment" and stated that interaction with the animal is considered to be dangerous and illegal with a punishment of fines or jail time.

Rescue officials say violating the Marine Mammal Protection Act could lead to up to an $11,000 fine.

The TMMSN urges anyone that sees a stranded animal to "DO NOT PUSH the animal" back to sea, nor should you attempt to swim or crowd them.

According to the U.S. Marine Mammal Protection Act, a stranded marine mammal is a mammal that either needs medical assistance due to illness or injury is unable to return to the water without assistance or is dead at sea.

If you see a stranded dolphin or whale stranded on the beach, please call 1-800-9MAMMAL (1-800-962-6625) immediately for assistance.

To learn more about the harassment of wild dolphins visit the NOAA Fisheries website.

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