Dolphin virus adds to deaths in troubled Florida lagoon
Author: Barbara Liston
A measles-like virus that is blamed for killing hundreds of dolphins on the U.S. East Coast has spread into a Florida lagoon where hundreds of manatees, brown pelicans and dolphins already died mysteriously in recent years.
The Indian River Lagoon, south of the Kennedy Space Center, was the scene of the unexplained deaths in 2012 and 2013 and is now threatened by cetacean morbillivirus, which is related to the virus that causes measles in humans.
Megan Stolen, a research scientist from the Hubbs-SeaWorld Research Institute, said on Tuesday that the disease was new to Florida’s Intercoastal Waterway, which includes the Indian River Lagoon, but that the deaths appear to be over.
She said 14 dead dolphins, including nine calves, had been found in August north of Kennedy Space Center and that another four dolphins…
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