FORT MYERS BEACH, Fla. – Wildlife officials are asking citizens to reduce single-use plastic consumption after a dolphin who had a stomach full of garbage passed away after being found stranded on a Florida beach.
According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, a female rough-toothed dolphin was found stranded on Fort Meyers beach Tuesday.
A necropsy performed Thursday revealed the dolphin had a stomach full of trash, including part of a rubber balloon and two plastic bags.
“Although a significant finding, there are many additional factors to consider, such as underlying illness, disease and maternal separation, before a final cause of stranding and death for the dolphin can be determined,” officials wrote on Facebook.
These samples will reportedly be sent for analysis to determine the cause of death.
Meanwhile, officials are asking citizens to reduce single use plastic and to not release balloons into the environment.