NEWBURYPORT (CBS) – A bottlenose dolphin has been spotted swimming in the Merrimack River in recent days. Wildlife experts call the sightings rare and said people should keep a safe distance from the dolphin.

The dolphin has been spotted from August 16-20 in several locations between Newburyport and Amesbury.

“Though it is not unheard of to have a bottlenose dolphin in New England and not uncommon for them to be alone at times, it’s very rare,” SSC Mammal Rescue posted on Facebook.

A dolphin has been spotted swimming in the Merrimack River. (Image Credit: Liam Rees)

The bottlenose dolphin usually is found from New York to Florida.

“We have been keeping close track of the locations of this dolphin. So far, the animal appears to be behaving normally and was observed to be feeding,” the organization wrote.

Anyone who spots the dolphin is asked to call a 24-hour hotline at (603) 997-9448.

People are asked to keep a safe distance from the dolphin. Boaters should turn off engines until it is a safe distance away, then move in the opposite direction.

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