Dolphin Carries Dead Calf on Her Back

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Whale watchers in Dana Point, Calif., witnessed an unexpected display on Tuesday when they saw a female dolphin carrying her dead calf on her back, according to KTLA-TV.



Passengers aboard Captain Dave's Dolphin and Whale Watching Safari saw the dolphin with something on her back supported by her dorsal fin, and before long identified it as a dolphin calf. "The dolphin - unfortunately, for one reason or another - is no longer alive," remarked Capt. Dave Anderson as he shot footage.

"I believe this calf has been dead for many days, possibly weeks," said Anderson. "You can see the flesh is decaying. In my nearly 20 years on the water, whale-watching, I have never seen this behavior. Nor have I ever seen anything quite as moving as this mother who refuses to let go of her poor calf."



Though the incident was sadder than anything the whale-watchers probably expected to see, it was a powerful and unique example of the emotional response wild animals have in the face of tragedy.

"The last thing I expected to see today was a funeral procession," said passenger Tony Green. "It was pretty profound for me to think about the kind of emotions that those animals feel and how much really more alike we are."

SEE 10 HEARTBREAKING ANIMAL MOURNING RITUALS:

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ONeAdaGalS

all living creatures have souls that never die and i guess our job on this earth is to learn something useful or we just keep returning till we get it right

April 11 2013 at 10:46 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
sandeshells

Dolphins can be very aggresive to other dolphins and people. One time as a kid though, I saw a mother dolphin and another huge dolphin trying to keep their dead baby afloat. They did this for quite awhile and at times it looked as if it was on the back. This looks to me as if they were taking the dolphin out further to sea. It's good thing never to mess or feed wild dolphins. Also, never buy a ticket to places like Sea World. They deserve to be wild and free and the best way to stop this horrible practice of training them, swimming with them is to never buy a ticket and to spread the news.

April 11 2013 at 4:44 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
mechair13

Humans assume WAY too much.
I say the older dolphin killed it, and is parading it around as a trophy.

My assessment has just as much merit as any other.
We have NO CLUE as to what transpired, or the dolphins motivation, yet we apply human emotion to it.

March 29 2013 at 9:25 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to mechair13's comment
Ark

I didn't even think about that! Could be.

March 29 2013 at 9:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
christinehodgkins

I love animals more than most people.

March 29 2013 at 7:45 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
christinehodgkins

I love animals more than people.

March 29 2013 at 7:45 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
triad43

Dolphins and big Apes, an tiny field mice, ALL mourn their losses, ask not for whom the Bells toll?, They toll for you!, so we should love and care for all living things, and give thanks for the gift of time an love we are privileged to have.

March 29 2013 at 6:42 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Merle

How sad , gives me an ache in my stomach.

March 29 2013 at 6:12 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
jerryclose13

The only thing I could think of is my upcoming trip to San Diego and trek to Orange Co. I suppose narcissism separates us from other mammals, Oh, and I live on the beach in Florida...

March 29 2013 at 5:49 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Tim and Marnie

mbregante you are 100% correct in your response

March 29 2013 at 5:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Marilyn

It's so amazing how they have better feelings than some humans!

March 29 2013 at 4:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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