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Mature male dugong found dead off Railay

Mature male dugong found dead off Railay

PHUKET: A male dugong estimated to be about 25 years old found washed floating just offshore from Ton Sai Beach in Krabi yesterday (Aug 18) has been brought to the Phuket Marine Biological Center (PMBC) in the hope of determining what caused it to die.

By The Phuket News

Monday 19 August 2019, 12:12PM

The male dugong, some 2.6 metres long and estimated to be 25 years old, was found floating off the Railay peninsular in Krabi yesterday (Aug 18). Photo: DNP

The male dugong, some 2.6 metres long and estimated to be 25 years old, was found floating off the Railay peninsular in Krabi yesterday (Aug 18). Photo: DNP

A healthy dugong is expected to live some 70 years.

The dugong was found in the water on the west side of the Railay Beach peninsular in Ao Nang, reported officers at Hat Noppharat Thara-Mu Ko Phi Phi National Park.

PMBC Chief Kongkiat Kittiwatanawong explained that the dugong, some 2.6 metres in length, was estimated to be about 25 years old.

“This male dugong was still in his reproductive years,” he said.

By inspecting the remains, the male dugong died only recently, he added.

“Externally, the dugong looked as if he was in perfect health, a fully grown male dugong with a full set of teeth,” Mr Kongkiat said.

However, he also noted, “We don’t know the death cause yet, but there are red bruises at the base of the front fins. The dugong has been brought to the PMBC for further examination to find the cause of death.”

Oak Maedow Phuket

Mr Kongkiat pointed out that the male dugong was the 16th to be found dead along the Andaman Coast this year, with the toll standing as: two in Phang Nga, eight in Trang, five in Krabi and one in Satun.

Mr Kongkiat raised the alarm over the mountnig number of dugong deaths just last month after two more were found dead, one off the coast of Krabi and the other in Trang, bringing the number of dugongs found dead to five in just four months. (See story here.)

Meanwhile, Mariam, the 8-month-old dugong that died on Saturday after months of care, will have her remains preserved and put on display at the Phuket Aquarium, operated by the PMBC, “for education purposes”, reports the Department of Marine and Coastal Resources (DMCR).

Mariam’s remains have been handed over to the National Science Museum (NSM) in Bangkok for taxidermy, after which her remains will go display, the DMCR explained yesterday (Aug 18)

Mariam died on Saturday Aug 17, three days after she was taken from the sea and placed in a nursery tank, over concerns for her safety, ahead torrential rain and rough seas forecast for the Andaman Sea.

National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation Department (DNP) officers reported that Mariam died of shock and other reasons, including several pieces of plastic found in her intestine. (See story here.)


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