Right Whale Calf, Breaching

Marine Mammal Stranding Network

If you find a stranded, injured, or dead marine mammal please contact the Marine Mammal Stranding Network quickly!

To report a stranded marine mammal in Carteret, Pamlico, Craven, or Beaufort counties – or Hammocks Beach State Park in Onslow county (dead or alive) call: 252-241-5119

To report a stranded or dead sea turtle, call the North Carolina Sea Turtle Stranding Network at 252-241-7367.

To report any other stranded, injured, orphaned or distressed animal call the Outer Banks Wildlife Shelter at 252-240-1200.

Please have as much of the following information ready as possible:

  • Number of animal(s) involved
  • Condition of animal(s): alive, dead, injured
  • Detailed location of animal(s) including address (street, town, county) or GPS location if possible
  • Identification or description of animal(s) including photos if safe and possible
  • Identification or description of animal(s) including size, color, dorsal fin, etc.
  • Name and telephone number of person reporting so we can return the call
  • Date and time of your observation

To report a marine mammal stranding south of Hammocks Beach, please call: 910 962-7266
To report a stranding north of Ocracoke, call: 252-455-9654

Three local dolphins and neonate.

“Hotlips”, “Barbara”, and “Mom”, 3 well-known local dolphin mothers. Photo: Keith Rittmaster

If a marine mammal can be saved, Marine Mammal Stranding Network researchers do everything they can to return it to the water. If they can’t save it, they’ll try to limit its suffering the best they can. Volunteers and researchers also make sure it did not die in vain by studying the animal. Examinations can help reveal cause of death and additional information to support conservation efforts in North Carolina and the world.

Marine Mammal Stranding Network Gallery