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Dolphin deaths stump scientist

Published Oct. 16, 2005

The deaths of 11 bottlenose dolphins during the past month in waters near the Florida-Alabama line have mystified a scientist who examined the carcasses. Dolphin deaths in Perdido Bay, which separates the western tip of the Florida Panhandle from Alabama, and adjacent waters of the Gulf of Mexico have averaged only 12 a year until now, said the Rev. Gerald Regan, a biology professor and a member of the National Marine Mammal Stranding Network. The cause or causes of the 11 recent deaths did not appear obvious and Regan is awaiting an analysis of lung samples. At this point, Regan said, he knows more about what didn't kill the animals than what did. "My position has been that I do not think it is violent human interference," Regan said. "We haven't found any scars or cuts." He also has ruled out starvation, old age and cold weather.Spaceport workers might deal

CAPE CANAVERAL _ Spaceport USA workers, who threatened a strike Friday after rejecting one contract offer, will vote Tuesday on a replacement recommended by union negotiators. The union represents 300 kitchen workers, bus drivers and other non-management employees at the Kennedy Space Center tourist complex. "The company really came up with a very, very good offer and the contract negotiation committee will recommend that the workers accept the new offer," Marlene Thomas, a negotiator with the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, said Saturday. "There are some concessions but nothing that we can't live with."