Masses of dead dolphins wash the Black Sea

Not only are people suffering from the Russian invasion of Ukraine, but the animals and the environment will also suffer massive damage. Conservationists are now sounding the alarm, but Russia is reluctant.

Dead dolphins swim to the Black Sea coast even in times of peace, but this year there are obviously many. In Sevastopol in the Crimea and in Sochi, Russia, marine biologists have counted more than 700 dead and 90 stranded dolphins. Last year, there were 350 dead animals, according to Euronews.

Conservationists from other neighboring countries report similar issues: The Romanian media reports at least 62 dolphins washed away, at least 80 in Turkey since February: “Extraordinary increase”, quotes Bayram Öztürk, head of the Turkish Navy Research Foundation. Even dead dolphins with explosion injuries have been washed away in Bulgaria. According to Ivan Rusev, director of the Tusli Lagoon National Park near Odessa, it is impossible to determine how many marine mammals have died this year. But he expects there will be thousands.

Russia denies mass dolphin deaths

According to Ružev, the reason for the mass death of dolphins is obvious: “The Russian fleet in the Black Sea is constantly firing powerful grenades and using military sonar, which reaches over 200 decibels underwater,” Ružev writes on Facebook. “Animals lose their sense of direction and acoustic control of their surroundings. They get lost on land and die in panic.” The fact that the dead dolphins had no traces of a net or broken tails is strong evidence that they were not killed by poachers.

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