THE body of a dolphin has been washed up onto a Hampshire beach.

The unusual discovery was made by walkers on Lepe beach yesterday.

Wildlife experts say the dolphin has been dead for some time and shows signs decomposition.

It is not known how the mammal died or how long it has been on the beach.

Tim Ferrero, head of marine conservation at the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trusts, said: “It's quite clear this is a very composed animal as you can see a lot of decomposition and blubber.

“This is an animal that has died and been dead for some time before it was washed up on the beach.

“It's probably not a harbour porpoise but probably a dolphin of some sort.

“There is not a huge population of dolphins but there are sightings fairly regularly of dolphins and harbour porpoises.”