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30 large dolphins beach themselves in northeastern Brazil; 7 die, news reports say

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Reuters

Around 30 large dolphins have beached themselves in northeastern Brazil.

The dolphins known as false killer whales ran aground on Sunday in Areia Branca, roughly halfway between the cities of Fortaleza and Natal.

Images distributed by the environmental police of Rio Grande do Norte state show beachgoers and passers-by attempting to aid the animals, which lay in shallow waters. Most were still, occasionally moving their tails, as beachgoers swabbed them with wet T-shirts.

O Globo newspaper reported Monday that at least seven on the animals have died.

The paper said it was not immediately known why the animals beached themselves, but biologists were examining whether the pod leader may have been ill.

O Globo says this is among the largest collective beachings in Brazil in recent decades.