Dolphins sighted in Baltic Sea - global warming?

28th September 2007, Comments 0 comments

28 September 2007, Stralsund, Germany (dpa) - For the first time in several years, dolphins have been sighted far into the Baltic Sea, and a German scientist said Thursday it might be a symptom of global warming.

28 September 2007

Stralsund, Germany (dpa) - For the first time in several years, dolphins have been sighted far into the Baltic Sea, and a German scientist said Thursday it might be a symptom of global warming.

The crew of a German border patrol boat photographed the two common dolphins, species Delphinus delphis, on Sunday near the island of Hiddensee.

"Sensational," said Harald Benke, director of the German Museum of the Sea in Stralsund. "The usual dolphin habitat is much warmer, for example the Mediterranean Sea." Dolphin sightings in the Baltic were rare: the last was in 2001.

The dolphins swam alongside the patrol boat for four hours. One was a young dolphin and it was seen taking milk from the other, its mother, according to Benke.

Porpoises are native to the Baltic, where they can survive thanks to a thick fatty layer. Benke suggested the cold would not affect the thinner-skinned dolphins too badly. "Their main problem would be a lack of food in winter," he said.

DPA

Subject: German news

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