Mozambican authorities have begun an investigation into the mysterious deaths of no fewer than 111 spinner dolphins on an island in the country.
The dolphins, all of the same species – Stenella Longirostris, were found dead at the Bazaruto Archipelago National Park, Inhambane Province, southern Mozambique.
Mozambique’s Ministry of Land, Environment and Rural Development said the 25 deceased dolphins were first discovered on Sunday and another 86 on Tuesday, 23 February 2021.
The ministry added that the cause of the deaths is still unknown but a probe has begun.
“The team from Bazaruto Archipelago National Park in Inhambane province found 86 lifeless dolphins on the west coast of Bazaruto Island,” a ministry statement said.
“They most likely beached during the night,” the park’s Facebook post said. “So far, a total of 111 dolphins have died. We are continuing to take samples.”
Meanwhile, the park’s head of inspection, Tomás Manasse, said initial autopsy did not indicate any “problem with the skin, tongue or intestines” but samples had been sent to a laboratory in the capital, Maputo.
Experts say last week’s cyclone Guambe, that caused unrest in the waters of the island of Bazaruto, may be one of the causes of the dolphins death.
Members of the park will monitor the area in the coming days to prevent more stranding. The protected waters of the national park are home to dolphins, whales and dugongs.