Media Relations

Press Release:

*****MEDIA ADVISORY*****

MEDIA CONTACT: Cara C. Perry
772-332-0515, perryc@fau.edu

FAU’s Harbor Branch Rehabilitation Center Continues to Treat Four Juvenile Short-Finned Pilot Whales in Critical Condition; One Whale Expired

FORT PIERCE, FL (September 3, 2012) – FAU’s Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute's (HBOI) Rehabilitation Center continues to treat four juvenile whales that were transported to HBOI after a stranding event Saturday, September 1 that included 22 short-finned pilot whales at Florida’s Avalon State Park Beach in St. Lucie County. On Sunday, September 3 at noon, one of the five juvenile short-finned pilot whales currently at the HBOI facility expired. The whale that expired was one of the males that appeared to be in fairly stable condition at approximately 10 a.m., but his health declined rapidly.

The four remaining whales’ blood parameters indicate inflammation, evidence of stress and infection, which is not uncommon in stranded marine mammals. In addition, they are juveniles that are still developing their immune system and are experiencing stress due to being out of their natural environment and social structure. As a result of their immune systems being compromised, their prognosis is fairly guarded.

Under the direction of Harbor Branch Staff Veterinarian Dr. Juli Goldstien and Sea World Veterinarians Dr. Michelle Davis and Dr. Stacy DiRocco, veterinarian technicians, animal care specialists and volunteers from Harbor Branch’s Marine Mammal Research and Conservation Program, SeaWorld Orlando, The Marine Mammal Conservancy, University of Florida, and Ocean Embassy are providing care and monitoring the condition of the whales on a 24-hour basis.

The next written media advisory on the condition of the whales at FAU’s HBOI Rehabilitation Center will be distributed Tuesday, September 4 at approximately 10 a.m.

For more information, please contact Cara C. Perry at 772-332-0515 or perryc@fau.edu

-FAU-


About Florida Atlantic University:
Florida Atlantic University, established in 1961, officially opened its doors in 1964 as the fifth public university in Florida. Today, the University, with an annual economic impact of $6.3 billion, serves more than 30,000 undergraduate and graduate students at sites throughout its six-county service region in southeast Florida. FAU’s world-class teaching and research faculty serves students through 10 colleges: the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters, the College of Business, the College for Design and Social Inquiry, the College of Education, the College of Engineering and Computer Science, the Graduate College, the Harriet L. Wilkes Honors College, the Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine, the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing and the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science. FAU is ranked as a High Research Activity institution by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The University is placing special focus on the rapid development of three signature themes – marine and coastal issues, biotechnology and contemporary societal challenges – which provide opportunities for faculty and students to build upon FAU’s existing strengths in research and scholarship. For more information, visit www.fau.edu.

About Florida Atlantic University:
Florida Atlantic University, established in 1961, officially opened its doors in 1964 as the fifth public university in Florida. Today, the University, with an annual economic impact of $6.3 billion, serves more than 30,000 undergraduate and graduate students at sites throughout its six-county service region in southeast Florida. FAU’s world-class teaching and research faculty serves students through 10 colleges: the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters, the College of Business, the College for Design and Social Inquiry, the College of Education, the College of Engineering and Computer Science, the Graduate College, the Harriet L. Wilkes Honors College, the Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine, the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing and the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science. FAU is ranked as a High Research Activity institution by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The University is placing special focus on the rapid development of three signature themes – marine and coastal issues, biotechnology and contemporary societal challenges – which provide opportunities for faculty and students to build upon FAU’s existing strengths in research and scholarship. For more information, visit www.fau.edu.

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