‘A fin, a tail and thrashing water:’ Dolphin rescue at Ned’s Point Beach

Mar 13, 2023

MATTAPOISETT — Elissa Roberg was not expecting to swim with the dolphins during her usual beachside walk around Ned’s Point in Mattapoisett on Friday, March 10. 

Self-proclaimed animal lover Roberg stepped into action when she spotted something “flapping in the water” and a large crowd gathered on the marshy shore.

“It was just a fin, a tail and thrashing water,” she said, adding that it was initially  hard to tell what type of animal she saw struggling from a distance.

As she got closer to the water, Roberg saw it was a dolphin. 

“It just looked like it needed help,” she said.

Rodberg said that she “acted on instinct” and ran into the ocean.

“My initial reaction was to get it out so it could go back with its pod,” she said. 

Rodberg said the dolphin appeared to be stuck between the rocks.

“It was really hard for the poor thing to weave through,” she said, noting how the dolphin kept getting caught on the rocks.

Rodberg tried to keep herself safe as she battled the current and slippery jagged rocks as she tried to navigate the animal to a clearing. 

“It was like an obstacle course,” Rodberg said. noting how. “I was trying to keep an eye on the dolphin [and] trying not to hurt it in any way.”

She explained that she tried rubbing the dolphin to keep it calm during the ordeal.

Rodberg said she was able to lead the dolphin to safety before Mattapoisett Police Department arrived. She estimated that the entire rescue took 20 minutes. 

“I did see it go off on its way,” Rodberg said.

The Mattapoisett Police Department did not yet respond to requests for comment.

“Everyone wants to swim with the dolphins,” Roberg said. “Well I did, in a different way, it wasn’t in the Caribbean.”