Trapped dolphins' escape from Heart's Delight harbour hinges on wind changing
Harbour too shallow for ice breaker to come in to rescue dolphins
The survival of a trapped pod of white-beaked dolphins is dependant on the wind changing and blowing away the ice that has them pinned.
At least seven dolphins have been stuck in the harbour in Heart's Delight for much of the past week.
Wayne Ledwell, with Newfoundland's Whale Release and Strandings group, says a rescue is doubtful, because the harbour is too shallow for an ice breaker to access.
He said that if a vessel could cut a path, the ice would likely close too quickly for the dolphins to follow and escape.
Nonetheless, a local fisherman entered the water in his boat on Tuesday to try and clear up a little more space to allow the dolphins to swim around.
Ledwell said the best hope for the safety of the dolphins is for winds to push out the ice that's trapping them in the harbour.
Officers with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) were onsite in the community on Tuesday.
DFO officers had requested assistance from a Canadian Coast Guard ship in the area, but it was determined that it would be too dangerous for the dolphins if the vessel attempted to shift the ice in the harbour.
The organization said its hopeful that with offshore winds predicted Wednesday, the ice will move out of the harbour and allow the dolphins to escape.
In the meantime, DFO is reminding people not to touch any mammals because of the possibility of disease transmission.
It's unclear how long the dolphins can remain in the harbour before their lives are endangered.
With files from Zach Goudie