Picture of the dead Indo-Pacific Humpback Dolphin* found at the Tanjung Bungah beachfront.
By Imran Hilmy, 6th January 2018;
The Malaysian Nature Society (MNS) has questioned why no autopsy was conducted on two Dolphins found dead less than a week apart at the Tanjung Bungah beachfront.
MNS advisor D. Kanda Kumar said Dolphins are not common in Penang waters but have been spotted around the island sometimes.
He said it is quite baffling that the Dolphins were found dead in the same area within the same week
“This might indicate something is wrong with the waters there, we might not know whether the area is contaminated or the Dolphins had plastic waste in their stomachs”, he told The Sun when contacted.
Kanda Kumar said the relevant authorities should come and collect the carcasses for an autopsy.
He said without an autopsy, the cause of death of the mammals will not be known.
“There must be a reason why the Dolphins were found dead in the same area, there could be something wrong with the waters”, he said.
When contacted Penang Department of Fisheries (DOF) director Noraisyah Abu Bakar confirmed that the department had received reports from the public about the dead Dolphins.
She said the mammals are from the common species of dolphins known as Common Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus)*.
She also pointed out the mammal is not endangered, the department is not required to conduct an autopsy on the carcasses.
“Following the standard operating procedure, we did not conduct an autopsy on the mammals as it is not endangered”, she said.
Noraisyah said necessary action had been taken by the department and urge the public to inform the authorities if they discover any dead marine species in their respective areas.
She also called on environmentalist groups and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to work together with the FIR in creating awareness and at the same time protect endangered marine life in Penang waters.
Source: The Sun Daily
*Contrary to the opinion of the Penang Department of Fisheries director, the carcasses look more like Indo-Pacific Humpback Dolphins (Sousa chinensis), and have been identified as such by multiple sources in other reports.