Heroin Substitute, Not Loud Music, Killed Swiss Dolphins

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Animal lovers were in an uproar when two dolphins, Shadow and Chemlers, died suddenly at Switzerland's Connyland Amusement park in 2011. Originally, loud techno music from a nearby rave was blamed for the animals' unfortunate demise, but now an in-depth investigation has turned up a more surprising cause of death: drugs.

According to Time magazine, traces of buprenorphine, a semi-synthetic opioid used to manage heroin dependency, was found in the the urine of both dolphins. Based on the amount of the drug present in the dolphins' systems, the professionals who performed the autopsy and prepared the toxicology report believe that the heroin substitute was fed to the animals by party-goers of the nearby rave.

Marine biologist Cornelis van Elk said that opiates like buprenorphine are especially dangerous to underwater mammals because the drugs shut down the part of the brain that regulates breathing.

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This is more sad news for Shadow and Chemlers' keepers, who have been devastated by the heart-breaking incident. One of the dolphin's caretakers, Nadja Gasser, said that she has been unable to sleep soundly since the "horrendous" and "drawn-out death" of the beautiful creatures.

RELATED: Cat rescued in meth bust tests positive for drug.

Connyland reps promised that they will ask questions to prosecutors about the culpability of the rave organizers and attendees, especially after prosecutors originally rejected claims that party-goers could be the blame for the beloved dolphins' deaths.

RELATED: Meet a bionic dolphin and more amazing animals.

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Sheilabt6260

It is a shame that people don't see beforehand how their actions will affect others. Those innocent animals did nothing to deserve that kind of abuse. Those responsible just didn't have anything better to do, or worse, a poor attempt at getting a cheap thrill! I hope they catch whoever did this, and they are punished to the full extent of the Switzerland law.

May 15 2012 at 3:34 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
jakiredmond

How sad :(

May 09 2012 at 6:25 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
luckyrayinva

Someone , please kill these party animals with bare hands.

May 09 2012 at 11:33 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Janet Rockett

WTF? The people that did this are a disgrace to mankind......how were they able to get that close to the dolphins in the first place?

May 09 2012 at 8:23 AM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
marywindwolf

its the Zoo"s fault for letting these savage have loud music parties on the Zoo's lot.? What kind of devolved law did they allow to this to happen? Never will happen to American zoos for sure..

May 09 2012 at 1:21 AM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to marywindwolf's comment
howuben

I don't know this zoo nor the full story, I see some say they were on the property. How do we know something wasn't tossed over a fence?
Don't say it would never happen to American Zoos. It could happen anywhere. Mean people are everywhere and they do it when no one is around. Hopefully something can be learned from this and changes for all zoos will be made if necessary.

May 09 2012 at 9:11 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
jeffm714

this is the most damned killing of beautiful mamals ive ever heard of. the axxxxxxs that did this should be given life in prison.

May 09 2012 at 12:57 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Patricia,,,,,

I never can understand how humans are so evil and still able to be on this earth...

May 08 2012 at 10:31 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
grneydmuse

Anyone who would give an animal opiates is a sick person. Remember what goes around, comes around!

May 08 2012 at 9:33 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
tay tay

KARMA IS A B%%%H even worse when it is some thing as stupid as this R.I.P. babies what goes around comes around

May 08 2012 at 9:01 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
dfoster

Apparently, the drug also had shut of the brains of the humans who were using it, too.

May 08 2012 at 8:24 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply

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