An older female common dolphin in the waters behind the Hampshire Country Club prompted several calls to Mamaroneck village police Thursday afternoon.
The animal was in distress in a small cove of water behind the club, police said.
There is one designated agency for dealing with protected and endangered animals in New York state, the Riverhead Foundation for Marine Research & Preservation.
Foundation Executive Director and senior biologist Robert DiGiozanni said the dolphin succumbed shortly before his team arrived in the early evening.
Right now, DiGiozanni is saying that other calls of a dolphin in waters off New Rochelle were probably referring to this same animal.
She was an older female, he said. Preliminary examination revealed she was suffering from several minor ailments and passed due to old age.
Pathology test will be run, DiGiozanni said.
This kind of aquatic life is returning to this area, he said. Last summer 100-150 bottle nose dolphin were spotted in Long Island Sound and a humpded back whale was in New York Harbor, DiGiozanni said.
It is becoming less and less unusual to see these animals locally.
Federal law mandates that people stay at least 50 yards away from these protected and/or endangered species, DiGiozanni said.
Because his is the only local entity authorized to respond to calls for help for these animals, DiGiozanni urges people to call the non-profit foundation’s hot line, 631-369-9829 not only for animals in distress, but to report sightings so that they can be kept track of.