Nature Reclaims a Freshwater Right of Way
It only took two weeks – that’s right – TWO WEEKS of social distancing for the freshwater dolphins to return to the park. Two weeks of reduced pollution, two weeks of reduced human activity, two weeks to find their homes back in our park. Scientist have already said there’s been a drop in seismic noise which contributes to their return.
“When I was younger we would see the dolphins swimming down Bigelow Brook into Center Springs,” recalls Christopher Silver, now director of the department that oversees the park and its facility. “I couldn’t be happier that they are returning to their natural habitat.”
While some may be asking what the range of the river dolphin is (they are generally found throughout many river basins in South America and Asia), Manchester has been fortunate to have a ‘pod’ since the early 1850s when Arthur Cheney returned to Manchester from a trip to Boston with a gift for his father Ward. Local historians even note event records of special “Dolphin Days” held at the park where spectators from Providence to New York and as far as Chicago would visit to watch these creatures swim. Sadly the dolphins remained a mystery to the community for generations as society shifted and land use increased pushing their natural habitat further and further.
Today the real question remains- will we continue to see these majestic creatures thrive when we are done self-quarantining or will we leave our homes to soon to help them survive?
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