What To Do When You Find a Marine Mammal...
Stay Back! -- Observe! -- Report!
- Do not
approach any wild animal! Don't touch the animal. All marine mammals
are protected by the Marine Mammal Protection Act. This law makes
it illegal to touch, disturb, feed or otherwise harass marine mammals
without authorization. A beached whale, dolphin, or porpoise should
be reported immediately and left alone pending further instruction.
- Give the
animal plenty of space. We observe from a distance through binoculars
so that we don't stress the animal. Crowding around stresses the animal
and may cause it to act aggressively. Also, if you're close enough to cause a reaction in the animal, you're in violation of the Marine Mammal Protection Act!
- Keep pets
away from stranded animals. Not only can they bite and cause injury,
but also they themselves can become injured - especially by dogs.
Diseases can also be transmitted between stranded animals and pets.
try to render first aid. Do not pour water on it, feed it, cover
it, or attempt to move it to the water. It is normal for seals to
come ashore to rest - they often choose to be dry.
- Take note
of any obvious signs of injury and the overall body condition of the
animal. Is it robust or emaciated? Is it weak and gaunt? Are there
any open wounds?
- Note the
physical characteristics like size, absence or presence of external
ears, and fur color. This will help us determine the species and what
rescue equipment and volunteers are needed.
- Note the
presence of other animals. Some species are social animals and the fact that it's alone might tell us that it's in distress. (this is especially true for dolphins).
- Note the
state of the sea.
the exact location of the animal for accurate directions. Note any
recognizable landmarks. We can't rescue an animal if we can't find
any marine mammal you see by calling the New England aquarium's Hotline: (617) 973-5247. They will contact the Stranding Team.
To Report a Stranding or Sighting,
if the animal is dead, we want to know about it!
- Also, please call us if you see any whales from the beach!
Call the NEAQ Hotline: (617) 973-5247
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