Sunday, August 1, 2010

A Mystery In Ocean City's Waters - Dolphin 56 Comes Out to Play

A national mystery has been spotted in the waters around Ocean City. It goes by 56. 

No, it's not a secret agent, but something that leaves spotters just as baffled. 

It's Dolphin 56, which got it's name from the number "56" placed on its dorsal fin. 

"Dolphin 56" is a bottlenose dolphin that was released from research by marine biologists from Hubs-SeaWorld in Orlando, Florida.  At the time, he was 10-12 years old. 

Since then, Dolphin 56 has been spotted all along the East Coast. Sightings describe a dolphin who is more playful than others. The researchers described 56's behavior as being more solitary than normal. It was spotted hundreds of times coming up to fisherman and begging for food. Usually getting what it wanted with it's elaborate displays of aquatic acrobats.

Dolphin 56 has been roaming the East Coast for over 30 years now. His reputation has preceded himself, and now he even has his own facebook page (

In April, 2010, Dolphin 56 was spotted along Ocean City by Stephen Decatur Highschool seniors, and the spotting was confirmed by several locals and families who saw the dolphin playing.

Since then, there has been lots of of reports of 56 in New Jersey, but researchers are saying that 56 will once again head south towards Ocean City.

"My Oceanography class had 56 swim right up to our boats and beg on Friday, March 26, 2010. He seemed to be in good spirits, jumping and hamming it up for some fish. His jaw seemed to have been hurt at some point, maybe from a boating accident and he had typical scarring on his dorsal fin, but otherwise he was great. What a cutie! " - Courney Edith Ray

" My father saw dolphin 56 on Tuesday, Nov10 in Townsends Inlet, too! He didn't like squid, but was very friendly. They touched him after he banged the side of the boat!" - Lorin Sprangler

Let us know if you find him, or if he finds you first!

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