Wednesday, March 12

Friendly dolphin saves two whales

Here's a really cool story from New Zealand. According to this article from, two whales became disoriented and stranded along a beach. Apparently, they became stuck between a sand bar and the beach. Rescuers worked for more than an hour to help the whales, a mother and her calf, get back out to sea, only to see the whales beach themselves 4 times on the sand bar. It is the type of situation that generally doesn't end well for whales.

Then, out of nowhere, comes Moko the bottlenosed dolphin. Moko is regular visitor to the beach who often plays with the humans swimming there. Moko pushed between the human rescuers and the whales, got the whales headed in the right direction, then led the whales to the break in the sand bar so that they could reach the sea.

After the rescue, Moko went back to playing with swimmers from the beach.

The best guess of the rescuers is that Moko responded to the whales' distress calls. Dolphins have been known to protect people who have been lost at sea and to play with other animals, especially whales, but this is apparently the first known example of a dolphin rescuing a beached whale.

I'm sure that there is a lesson for us all here about helping others in their time of need, no matter how different from us they are...

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