North Padre Island visitors warned by animal experts about potentially aggressive dolphin

NORTH PADRE ISLAND, Texas (KTRK) -- The Texas Marine Mammal Stranding Network sent out a warning on Thursday regarding an aggressive dolphin in North Padre Island, Texas.

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Authorities said the dolphin is threatening human safety and the animal's life. Biologists reported the animal is showing aggressive behavior, separating children from their parents in the water and isolating swimming pets from their owners.

According to authorities, human interaction is to blame for the dolphin's behavior. For more than a year, biologists, law enforcement, and residents of the area have been encouraging people not to feed, swim with, or interact with the dolphin. While some have listened to the warnings, others continue to seek out the animal.

The dolphin has become so used to humans that it now seeks out people, boats, and any form of interaction, biologists said. The dolphin reportedly has wounds caused by boats.

Authorities said there are concerns for the dolphin's safety with increased watercraft activity over the upcoming holiday weekend.

What to do if you see the dolphin:

Authorities ask the public to avoid seeking out the dolphin. However, if you see the dolphin, it is likely to come close to your boat.

The best thing is to avoid stopping and slowly move away by maintaining your course and speed. Authorities suggest keeping your hands and feet inside the boat and not reaching over to try to touch or pet the dolphin.

It will eventually leave the side of your boat once you've moved out of its area, experts said. If you are swimming and see the dolphin, get out of the water as quickly as possible to avoid any potential interactions.

While the dolphin may seem friendly, authorities said this is a wild animal with unpredictable behavior.
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