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Two dolphins stranded on Taichung beach

TAIPEI -- Coast Guard personnel found two beached rough-toothed dolphins in central Taiwan over the weekend and were able to rescue one of them and hand it over to a research institution for treatment.

The two dolphins — one female and one male — were found on the beach near Song Bo Harbor in Taichung's Dajia District, according to the Coast Guard Administration's central office.

A larger, female dolphin weighing about 200 kilograms was found Saturday with bruises which did not appear to be life-threatening, the office said.

Personnel from the Coast Guard office kept the stranded animal wet before contacting National Cheng Kung University's Marine Biology & Cetacean Research Center for help.

The dolphin is now being treated and monitored at a wildlife protection area in Tainan.

The other dolphin, which weighed about 80 kilograms, was found dead on a nearby beach Sunday morning. The body of the male animal was turned over by the Taiwan Cetacean Society (TCS) to National Taiwan University to be examined.

Those handling the case would not speculate on reasons why the two animals ended up on the beach.

TCS official Kuo Hsiang-hsia said the group will try to establish the cause of the incident and the relationship between the two dolphins, and it was not ruling out the possibility that the two dolphins were mother and son.

Awareness of wildlife protection in Taiwan has improved in recent years with organizations such as the Taiwan Cetacean Society and the Marine Biology & Cetacean Research Center often mobilized to help stranded animals on short notice.

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