(CNN) - Rebuilding after last fall's Superstorm Sandy isn't the only reason Gov. Chris Christie has his mind on the Jersey shore.
The New Jersey Republican is putting his state's environmental protection agency behind an investigation into the spike of dolphin deaths up and down the East Coast.
His state is deploying additional aircraft and increasing patrols, the agency said, to monitor the waters for stranded bottlenose dolphins and to help recover them. They will also pump additional resources into lab testing of the carcasses.
"We're not going to watch as more dolphins die along the Shore," Christie posted online Thursday. "Today we're taking actions to figure out the problem."
Federal officials said at least 30 of the nearly 500 dolphins found dead from New York to North Carolina were infected with naturally-occurring cetacean morbillivirus. It is similar to measles in humans and is spread by direct contact between the animals or through the air.
It does not infect humans, they said, but still advised beach-goers to stay away from the dead dolphins, in part because sharks sometimes feed on the bodies.
The number of reported dolphin deaths is about 300 greater than usual for a summer in the region, officials say.
Twelve infected dolphins were found along the New Jersey coast and tests are pending on more of the 74 which have washed up there since July 9, said Bob Schoelkopf of the Marine Mammal Stranding Center.
The New Jersey effort is funded in part by a $92,000 federal grant from the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration, the state said.
Officials say they are working to determine if there are other factors behind the die-off.
– CNN's Laura Ly contributed to this report