Southern California -- this just in

« Previous Post | L.A. NOW Home | Next Post »

Dolphin freed from Long Beach Harbor construction site

Dolphin rescued

Hours of work by rescuers at a Long Beach Harbor construction site paid off early Wednesday when a wayward dolphin managed to swim back to sea unharmed, authorities said.

The dolphin had been confined to a space about the size of a swimming pool by vertical walls from an old wharf, said Port of Long Beach spokesman Lee Peterson. Officials believe the animal — which was first spotted by a construction inspector Monday morning — followed some fish into the redevelopment site during high tide.

When the animal continued swimming in the harbor Tuesday, officials sent divers to cut away part of the metal walls, hoping it would make it easier for the dolphin to swim over the top during the night’s high tide.

That’s basically what happened sometime after midnight, said Peter Wallerstein, director of Marine Animal Rescue in El Segundo. He said the dolphin probably swam through the “access” holes cut by the divers.

“The dolphin is gone,” Wallerstein  said Wednesday morning. “The work that we did yesterday paid off.... He swam out himself.”

Wallerstein said “everything was perfect” with the dolphin, describing him as  “young, strong and healthy.”

It’s the second disoriented dolphin spotted in Southern California in recent weeks. Marine experts and curious onlookers spent about two weeks monitoring a 7-foot common dolphin in the Bolsa Chica wetlands of Huntington Beach.

On Monday, NOAA biologists said they believed that dolphin had returned to sea. Wallerstein said the dolphins probably were chasing sardines.

“It’s not rare that dolphins come into harbors, but it is rare that they get stuck in these unique situations,” he said.


Acton wildfire fully contained, officials say

L.A. Now Live: Chat about Kelly Thomas, 'Bait Car'

Kelly Thomas beating: Judge may rule on Fullerton officers' trial

— Matt Stevens and Kate Mather

Photo: A wayward dolphin found its way out from a Long Beach Harbor construction site after crews cut away metal walls that would allow it to swim away. Credit: KTLA News

Comments () | Archives (0)


Recommended on Facebook


In Case You Missed It...


About L.A. Now
L.A. Now is the Los Angeles Times’ breaking news section for Southern California. It is produced by more than 80 reporters and editors in The Times’ Metro section, reporting from the paper’s downtown Los Angeles headquarters as well as bureaus in Costa Mesa, Long Beach, San Diego, San Francisco, Sacramento, Riverside, Ventura and West Los Angeles.
Have a story tip for L.A. Now?
Please send to newstips@latimes.com
Can I call someone with news?
Yes. The city desk number is (213) 237-7847.


Get Alerts on Your Mobile Phone

Sign me up for the following lists: