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Squeak’s new beak

A young Port River dolphin - Squeak - rescued from an entangled fishing line in April, has made a strong recovery.

Squeak’s new beak
Squeak today after making a strong recovery from his entanglement. Credit: Marianna Borrman

Back in April Squeak got into trouble when heavy gauge fishing line became tightly wrapped around his jaw (rostrum) and fins. The one-year-old dolphin was carrying the entanglement for weeks.

Squeak’s new beak
Squeak entangled in fishing line back in April 2019. Credit: Nikki Zanardo

A disentangled team led by the Department for Environment and Water (DEW) with SA Police, PIRSA, the Australian Marine Wildlife Research and Rescue Organisation and the Adelaide Dolphin Sanctuary Action Group worked to free the dolphin.

The team carefully netted the calf and his mother in shallow water, allowing DEW’s National Park and Wildlife Service marine park rangers to cut the line, and give the dolphin antibiotics to fend off any possible infection.

Marine park ranger Verity Gibbs said the deep cuts Squeak sustained to his head and dorsal fin just four months ago have now virtually disappeared, leaving the dolphin thriving and feeding normally.

“Squeak’s experience highlighted the need for the community to responsibly dispose of all fishing gear and always to bring in lines if dolphins were seen around their boat,” Ms Gibbs said.

“Squeak’s quick recovery was in-line with observations that dolphins have a remarkable ability to heal quickly, following even severe injuries such as shark bites.”