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9 dolphins saved off Massachusetts coast after swimming close to shore

9 dolphins saved off Massachusetts coast after swimming close to shore

At least nine dolphins were rescued and returned to the ocean after they were found swimming in shallow waters off the coast of Massachusetts this week, according to the International Fund for Animal Welfare.

Rescue teams received reports the nine Atlantic white-sided dolphins were swimming in the shallow waters of Wellfleet Harbor on Monday.

Shortly after the rescue team's arrival, one dolphin swam off, while the remaining eight needed to be rescued from the shallow shores.

PHOTO: The International Fund for Animal Welfare's Cape Cod rescue team saved trapped dolphins. (IFAW)
PHOTO: The International Fund for Animal Welfare's Cape Cod rescue team saved trapped dolphins. (IFAW)

After receiving a health assessment and treatment, the mammals were released into deeper waters.

Of the eight stranded dolphins, two were likely adults and the rest were likely sub-adults -- one a female and the rest were male.

Due to high winds, the dolphins were released at Duck Harbor in Wellfleet, Massachusetts -- the only area with safe conditions, according to the IFAW.

One of the dolphins was affixed with a temporary satellite tag. The tag is transmitting a few miles off-shore in Cape Cod Bay, Massachusetts, according to the IFAW.

PHOTO: The International Fund for Animal Welfare's Cape Cod rescue team saved trapped dolphins. (IFAW)
PHOTO: The International Fund for Animal Welfare's Cape Cod rescue team saved trapped dolphins. (IFAW)

One of the eight dolphins rescued then returned to shore once again on Tuesday in Provincetown. The animal was assessed, treated and affixed with a temporary satellite tag.

Rescue teams used kayaks to herd the animal before transporting it to deeps waters. Wednesday transmissions from the satellite tag showed it swimming well north of Cape Cod.

Two other dolphins were then spotted in shallow waters Wednesday -- one in Barnstable Harbor and a second in Wellfleet, according to the IFAW. The two dolphins were taken together in a rescue vehicle to Herring Cove Beach in Provincetown.

PHOTO: The International Fund for Animal Welfare's Cape Cod rescue team saved trapped dolphins. (IFAW)
PHOTO: The International Fund for Animal Welfare's Cape Cod rescue team saved trapped dolphins. (IFAW)

The IFAW said it affixed temporary satellite tags to three dolphins that appear to be swimming off-shore.

A second dolphin also stranded on Tuesday and was reported swimming in Barnstable Harbor, between the boat slips.

PHOTO: The International Fund for Animal Welfare's Cape Cod rescue team saved trapped dolphins. (IFAW)
PHOTO: The International Fund for Animal Welfare's Cape Cod rescue team saved trapped dolphins. (IFAW)

Rescuers used kayaks and vessel support from Milway Marina to herd the dolphin into an area where they could assess and treat it. The dolphin was affixed with a temporary satellite tag on its dorsal fin.

A third sub-adult female dolphin -- presumed to be the dolphin that swam away Monday -- without a tag was reported swimming close to shore near Wellfleet Pier, Massachusetts. Rescue teams used kayaks to herd the animal closer to shore so staff could remove it from the water for assessment and treatment before transporting it to a release site.

9 dolphins saved off Massachusetts coast after swimming close to shore originally appeared on abcnews.go.com