Report: Dolphins died of drug overdose after rave
Dolphins perform at the Connyland marine park in Switzerland.
May 7th, 2012
01:43 PM ET

Report: Dolphins died of drug overdose after rave

Two dolphins at a Swiss theme park died after ingesting a heroin substitute around the same time as a weekend rave at the park last November, according to reports from Switzerland.

A toxicology report from a forensics institute in St. Gallen, Switzerland, showed tests found traces of the heroin substitute buprenorphine in the dolphins' urine, according to a report in London's Daily Mail online, citing Swiss media reports.

The dolphins died within five days of each other in November, after the area near their pool in the Connyland marine park had been rented out for a weekend rave, according to the reports.

Cornelis van Elk, a Dutch marine biologist, said the drugs turn off a part of the dolphins' brains which tells them when to surface for air.

Connyland keeper Nadja Gasser told local media how one of the dolphins, named Chelmers, died, according to the Daily Mail.

"He was drifting under the water and was clearly in trouble and so we jumped into the water.

"We tried to hold him. He was shaking all over and was foaming at the mouth.

"Eventually we got him out of the water. His tongue was hanging out. He could hardly breathe.

"He was given adrenalin, but it didn't help.

"After an hour the dolphin died."

In a report in the Daily Mail shortly after the rave, wildlife experts said noise from the event could have stressed the animals' immune systems and led to the death of the first dolphin, Shadow.

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Filed under: Animals • Dolphins • Switzerland
soundoff (478 Responses)
  1. Old Crone

    What a tragedy and betrayal of trust by humanity.

    May 8, 2012 at 12:25 pm | Report abuse |
  2. mikebo

    Give these creeps an od of the same.

    May 8, 2012 at 12:29 pm | Report abuse |
  3. anchorite

    It seems the right wing has spambots that troll CNN articles just posting Obama hate on every article, regardless of subject or if it even takes place in the US.

    May 8, 2012 at 12:29 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Scottish Mama

    What a horrible death, to be drowned in a place where they are suppose to be safe. No more raves in the theme park.
    They are so intelligent, you have to wonder if they were panicking as we would if we were drowning.

    May 8, 2012 at 12:29 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Scott

    Very sad story... dolphins are amazing creatures. Why the hell did they allow a RAVE to take place anywhere near the dolphins? Of course, even a more formal event could have had a guest with these drugs, but at a rave it's practically expected. Dolphins should be given the same security as children, because I'm pretty sure they're not too far apart, intelligence-wise.

    May 8, 2012 at 12:44 pm | Report abuse |
  6. bookldy209

    Not worth replying to the anti-Obama trolls as he or she likely didn't even read the article. It's just the kind of thing the ignorant and uneducated do. Speaking of which, the park management owns this one – what were they thinking to rent to a Rave party?

    May 8, 2012 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • LOL

      Yet you still did!!! THAT is why they do it! LOL

      May 8, 2012 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Elliot

    It seems like lots of people just assume the ravers gave the dolphins the drugs purpose. Lots of things could have happened, it's sad any which way you put it though. Could have been an addict that decided he wanted to kick the habbit that night and tossed his stash in the pool knowing he could not go get it back. Could have been a girlfriend or boyfriend mad at their significant other and took the stash and tossed it in the pool. I think these scenarios are more believable than some kids just feeding the dolpins their drugs that they paid for, for themselves. People don't think.

    May 8, 2012 at 12:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jimbo

      I agree, was most likely an accident. Still bad, but I don't think it was for fun. Think people, think.

      May 8, 2012 at 1:07 pm | Report abuse |
  8. hypatia

    There is karma for this evil deed somewhere. And management should take a long, hard look at themselves for allowing a Rave anywhere near those poor animals.

    May 8, 2012 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
  9. ian osphere

    Earth's most precious treasure, its wonderful animals, and we treat them like just another resource, poisoning them and hunting them to extinction. Some stewards we turned out to be.

    May 8, 2012 at 1:01 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Former F-22 Pilot

    This is no way to announce the death of Junior Seau.

    May 8, 2012 at 1:08 pm | Report abuse |
  11. geneticroadkill

    For shame. These are today's kids! Dumb, disrespectful, and nasty. You get what you put out in this world and, as usual, fingers will be pointed to everyone except those who need to be accountable for their actions. Total disregard for anyone other than themselves. I hope the Mother will send them to their rightful place; not on Earth.

    May 8, 2012 at 1:11 pm | Report abuse |
  12. usarmyoverlord

    Wow these dolphins party hard 😉

    May 8, 2012 at 1:12 pm | Report abuse |
  13. jw

    so sad. these beautiful, innocent creatures died at the hand of a bunch of drugged out partied out humans. please dont put drugs in your body, unless it is urgent and medically prescribed. drink water as much as possible, be careful with the drug alcohol.

    May 8, 2012 at 1:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rob

      Very moving, jw. Verrrrrrrry moving.

      May 8, 2012 at 1:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Phil

      Why the water? what is this recommendation based on?

      May 8, 2012 at 4:26 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Ed

    Man..that's sad. Poor animal had no idea what was happening, forced to put 100% TRUST in humans, and this is the result. We are all reponsible for inferior animals by default, and this time we failed. Poor beast :-(.

    May 8, 2012 at 1:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Lloyd

      I've never seen a dolphin dose a human's drink.....I would argue they aren't the ones that are inferior

      May 9, 2012 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Caitlin

    These dolphin shouldn't even have been in captivity

    May 8, 2012 at 2:41 pm | Report abuse |
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