Beloved Gulf World dolphin dies

Gannett Florida staff report
Walton Sun

PANAMA CITY BEACH — Astro the rough-toothed dolphin has died after nearly 14 years with Gulf World Marine Park.

According to a press release from Gulf World, Astro was founded stranded in Galveston, Texas in 2005. Named after the Houston Astros, he spent several months in rehabilitation at the Texas State Aquarium before being transferred to Gulf World on Feb. 1, 2006.

“Gulf World is heartbroken to share the news of the loss of (its) beloved rough-toothed dolphin,” the release said. “He was loved and cherished by guests and staff and will be greatly missed.”

Gulf World added that Astro had chronic, severe scoliosis for which he received daily physical therapy, as well as laser therapy and pain medications as needed. He even had a local chiropractor come to see him at the facility and assisted in his treatment of the scoliosis over the years.

Signs of inflammation or infection were found during routine blood work in September 2019. Astro showed no outward signs of illness and continued to eat and behave normally until early December.

Unfortunately, Astro did not respond to the various treatments attempted and succumbed to his illness on Dec. 13.

Pathology results confirmed that he died due to a chronic case of pneumonia, the release said.