After being found stranded in Florida waterways in May of 2021 facing parasites on his dorsal fins, pectoral fins, and fluke, as well as inflamed lungs and stomach, a beloved bottlenose dolphin by the name of Apollo found a new home at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium (CMA); 2 years later, the aquarium announces that Apollo has lost his battle with health challenges on social media.
"We are saddened to share the passing of Atlantic bottlenose dolphin, Apollo, age 4, who lived at Clearwater Marine Aquarium since 2021 after being found stranded." the Instagram post by Clearwater Marine Aquarium reads, in part.
In March, the Aquarium states that Apollo appeared to show signs of discomfort, their dedicated veterinary and animal care teams closely monitored and modified Apollo's diet and regimen in hopes of seeing improvement. Apollo appeared to show signs of progress until the morning of June 12, where his health began to rapidly decline, ultimately resulting in the worst.
"Our team immediately intervened and Apollo received veterinary support and care to keep him comfortable." the post continues. "Despite our best efforts, Apollo's condition deteriorated and he sadly passed."
A necropsy is scheduled to determine the cause of death, which has not been released yet as of publication.
"Our team is heartbroken by Apollo’s passing. The welfare and well-being of our animals have always been our top priority at Clearwater Marine Aquarium. Apollo was a beloved member of our CMA family, and his passing has left a void in our hearts. We will continue to learn from Apollo's life." said Dr. James "Buddy" Powell, chief zoological officers for CMA.
"We would like to express our gratitude to the dedicated staff and veterinary professionals who worked tirelessly to provide the best possible care for Apollo. Their expertise, compassion, and commitment to the well-being of our animals are admirable.”
According to the aquarium, Apollo also had significant hearing loss, which made him non-releasable.
As a working marine animal hospital, CMA specializes in providing care to marine animals that need recovery and rehabilitation before being released or providing a forever home to those that cannot be released due to physical limitation.
Article by Rachael Volpe