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Four mammals in three days wash up along Yucatan coast

Yucatan Coast, Yucatan — In less than a week, four marine mammals have been found washed up along the Yucatecan coast. They were found on the beaches of Dzilam de Bravo, Chelem and Chicxulub Puerto and Progreso.

Dr. Raúl Díaz Gamboa, head of the Yucatan Marine Mammal Research and Conservation Program, together with his students from the Autonomous University of Yucatan (UADY), were in charge of performing the autopsies.

He says one of the first specimens was found alive in Dzilam. It was transferred to a marine pool for medical attention, however, it was in serious condition and when they tried to release him into the sea, he died shortly afterward.

The second was found alive but also died quickly, while the other two were found beached and already dead. One of them, a dolphin, was found by the Progreso Ecological Police, who Gamboa said, had bite marks on its body, possibly from a shark. Authorities noted that the bite marks were post-mortem.

Three of the mammals were pygmy killer whales. They were found on Dzilam de Bravo, Chicxulub Puerto and Progreso beaches. The fourth was a dolphin located on Wednesday on a Chelem beach. The mammals began washing up along the Yucatan coast on Monday.

According to autopsies, they all experienced respiratory problems possibly due to their age.

“They were all very old males. Most likely, three were from the same group, because they do not travel alone. They are oceanic mammals so it is not common to see them on the coast,” he explained.