Marine mammal rescuers today will try to shoo a dolphin out of the Bolsa Chica shallows and into the ocean.
At sundown Friday, the dolphin was circling in water only about 3-feet deep.
Peter Wallerstein, a veteran seal, dolphin and whale wrangler, and several other people tried to persuade to the roughly 7-foot-long, 500-pound mammal to head for deep water, but it remained in Bolsa Bay.
Dolphins can sense a turn of the tide, and would-be rescuers hope it will rejoin its pod during the next high tide. Several other dolphin were hanging around the Warner Avenue bridge, on the Huntington Harbour side of the waterway.
Wallerstein and other dolphin experts with the group Marine Animal Rescue will monitor the situation today and, if necessary, may put the dolphin in a harness and move it into deep water.
"It's a healthy, adult animal, and it's not needed for us to intervene right now," Wallerstein said.
The dolphin likely chased some bait fish into a "dead-end area" of the wetlands near Warner Avenue and Pacific Coast Highway, Wallerstein said.
Wallerstein urged curious onlookers to stay away.
"We just want people to be smart. If they go and observe, be quiet and don't get involved or get in the water," Wallerstein said, adding that too much noise or activity could make the dolphin anxious.
"Be smart and stay away," he said.