Did the remaining five Atlantic bottlenose dolphins make it out to Sandy Hook Bay before their temporary home in the Shrewsbury River froze over?
Two weekly newspapers have accounts in their current issues from witnesses who say they saw the animals swimming from the river into the bay on January 15, before the river froze.
The Monmouth Journal and the Two River Times have similar accounts quoting Jay Cosgrove, co-owner of Bahrs Landing Seafood and Marina in Highlands, and restaurant employees who said the dolphins were leaping and diving as they headed into open waters late that morning.
The dolphins were “jumping right out of the water, like SeaWorld,” Cosgrove tells the Journal.
Employee Maryann Crinigan tells the TRT:
“They were actually doing flips in the water as they were leaving,” Crinigan said. “They looked happy and were very entertaining.”
The restaurant is located just on bay side of the Route 36 bridge that spans the strait between the river and bay.
Teri Frady, spokeswoman for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration, the federal agency with jurisdiction over the dolphins, says the agency has interviewed one of the witnesses to the apparent departure.
She says, in an email:
At present, the location and condition of 13 of the original 16 animals is unknown. Without confirmed resightings, it is not possible to know if they are alive or dead, still in the river system or elsewhere.
NOAA urges anyone who sees the dolphins, or has seen them since January 13 is urge to
let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.