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Stranded Merritt Island dolphin recovering

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MERRITT ISLAND, Fla. - An adult male bottlenose dolphin found stranded in shallow water in the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge Thursday night is recovering, said SeaWorld spokesman Nick Gollattscheck Friday.

The dolphin is in stable condition and has started eating at SeaWorld's marine mammal medical facility.

SeaWorld Orlando's animal rescue team  returned to the park Thursday night with the dolphin, which rescuers said had been in critical condition and appeared thin at about 8 feet long and 350 pounds.

Gollattscheck said rescuers don't know how the dolphin became stranded in the Brevard County refuge.

The dolphin will be watched around-the-clock by animal experts and vets at SeaWorld's marine mammal medical facility, and another update will be issued Friday morning, Gollattscheck said.

Anyone who sees an injured marine animal can help by calling the FWC hotline at 1(888) 404-3922 or by dialing *FWC on a cellular device.