Dolphins stop traffic in East Freo

Photo: Jon Bassett
Dolphins stop traffic in East Freo
Dolphins stop traffic in East Freo
Dolphins stop traffic in East Freo
Dolphins stop traffic in East Freo
Photo: Jon Bassett

FEEDING and playing dolphins stopped pedestrians walking along the Swan River at East Fremantle about 7.30am this morning.

“One of the dolphins is believed to be Akuna, an adult female,” a Department of Park and Wildlife spokeswoman said.

The Western Suburbs Weekly stopped and took photographs and footage of the four dolphins, which could be easily be seen in the shallow, clear water.

There are about 20 bottlenose dolphins which regularly use the river, forming a clan group which has been heavily studied in recent years.

This morning, the mammals came within 1m of the riverwall, patrolling up and down its length, sometimes with bursts of speed.

Occasionally, one would arch its back and stick its head out of the water, looking as if it was either scraping its belly along the riverbed or looking at the people on the foreshore.

The DPaW spokeswoman said researchers were unsure about the other dolphins’ identities, but at least one was likely to have been another female because they tended to occur together.

“The behaviour they are displaying is foraging for food. They actively force the fish up against the walls in order to capture them,” she said.

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