A live-stranding of a Clymene dolphin (Stenella clymene, Gray, 1850) in the Gulf of Venezuela: first record for the southern Caribbean
Keywords:Strandings, Distribution, Stenella clymene, Morphological identification
Clymene dolphin, Stenella clymene, is currently classified as “Least concern” on the UICN Red List. It is distributed in tropical and temperate waters of the Atlantic Ocean, including the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico, but its occurrence is majority documented in the Gulf of Mexico, Atlantic coast of the United States and the Brazilian coast. This is the first record of the presence of Clymene dolphin in Venezuela and in Southern Caribbean Sea, an individual live-stranded in the mouth of Lake Maracaibo, in the western Gulf of Venezuela, that died few hours later of event at stranding site. The macroscopic external examination and a necropsy were conducted, revealed no wounds or lacerations produced by anthropogenic interaction. Respiratory failure due to stranding was determined as the cause of death of the animal, but the causes of the stranding could not be determined. The individual was identify as a female adult of Clymene dolphin considering the body coloration pattern, morphological measurements and tooth counts. This event confirms the importance and scientific value of stranding records by providing relevant biological and ecological data contributing to the characterization of the species.
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