Cornwall dolphin warning issued
People have been warned to steer clear of dolphins off the Cornish coast because they may be carrying harmful bacteria.
Studies of dolphins found dead on Cornish beaches over the past six years have revealed than more than half of the mammals were carrying brucellla ceti bacteria. No other cases have been reported among bottlenose dolphins washed ashore in the rest of England and Wales between 1989 and 2008.
The Marine Strandings Network, which worked with the Animal Health and Veterinary Laboritories Agency (AHVLA) in the analysis, said that while the bacteria posed a “very small” risk to humans, people should avoid swimming with them “just in case”.
The AHVLA, which also recommended people do not touch dolphins washed-up on beaches, said that related strains of brucella bacteria could cause “abortive and sexual problems” in mammals and could be passed to humans.
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