Dolphin trapped by Ida rescued from Louisiana canal

Published: Sep. 9, 2021 at 1:22 PM EDT
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(CNN) – A dolphin that lost its way during Hurricane Ida was returned to the Gulf in a huge rescue effort dubbed “Operation Free Flipper.”

Following the storm, the juvenile bottlenose dolphin was spotted in a canal in Slidell, Louisiana. Officials believe it was pushed inland through an estuary and became trapped.

Local and federal agencies, plus animal rescue organizations, teamed up for the relocation operation.

Roughly a dozen people entered the canal and used nets to corral the wayward mammal. It was then carried to a waiting vehicle with a water tank inside.

After being examined by marine mammal experts, the dolphin was deemed healthy and transported with a police escort to the Mississippi coast.

The operation came to an end as the dolphin was safely released to the open waters of the Gulf of Mexico.

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