NBC correspondent Kerry Sanders participated in two on-air dolphin rescues while in Florida to cover Hurricane Irma, recently downgraded to a tropical storm.
When MSNBC cut to Sanders, reporting from Marco Island Monday, he was physically guiding a beached baby dolphin into the surf.
“Good morning, we have a dolphin that’s been washed ashore here,” Sanders said. “We’re attempting to see if we can get it back out into the water. Clearly it was washed in during the hurricane. It certainly has gone through a lot of trauma here.”
“Let’s see if it can do what it does best,” he added after letting the baby dolphin go. “It’s exhausted.”
When the broadcast returned to Sanders later, the camera showed several people carrying an adult dolphin, which he speculated may have been the baby dolphin’s mother. Sanders reported both swam away into the Gulf of Mexico.
In off-air animal rescues, two manatees were rescued after their plight was posted to Instagram.
Irma made landfall in Florida early Sunday as a Category 4 storm before being downgraded to a tropical storm Monday. ABC News reported at least 42 deaths, including five killed in Florida and 37 in the Caribbean, and millions have been left without power.