Dolphins act as bodyguards to mother whale and baby to protect them from other male whales
Screenshot taken from tweet posted by WWWA, on social media.
Dubai: A pod of dolphins helped save a humpback whale, Spirit, and her calf Sunny, from nearby whales, and social media users found the gesture “amazing”.
According to a report by US-based magazine Newsweek, a mother humpback whale found her young calf at risk of danger while swimming off Australia’s southwest coast. Five male whales surrounded the mother and baby with the intention to mate.
However, a pod of bottleneck dolphins managed to save the day. They raced towards the duo and surrounded them protectively.
According to Whale Watch Western Australia (WWWA), an Australian company that offers whale watching tours, around 10 to 15 dolphins arrived and helped the mother and her calf by dispersing the males, before the calf was injured.
On their website, they posted a video of the encounter, which was witnessed during a whale watching tour. The same video was uploaded on their YouTube chanel and has more than 97,000 views.
They said that while the males did not want to harm the calf, they did want to mate with its mother. However, if the calf gets separated from its mother it can be fatal.
They reported: “For 40 minutes the mother and calf kept very close to our vessel… the intensity and focus diminished from the males until one left the area and the lone male then behaved himself enough to be welcomed as an escort.”
Incredible sequence of events led us to be in a privileged position as a Humpback Mother will defend her calf by all means necessary, including using our vessel as a protection barrier and the help of some heroic Dolphins😍 Check out our Daily Report➡️ https://t.co/JAntHYsVX3 pic.twitter.com/I3ohgMiuOD— Whale Watch WA (@WhaleWatchWA) August 19, 2018
There were initially two whale mothers that were being chased with their babies, and they stuck together. However, after being chased for around 30 minutes, Spirit and her calf had to move away, giving the other duo a chance to escape. Spirit then swam close to the whale-watching vessel, before the “bodyguards” aka dolphins, helped them out.
The story has been doing the rounds on social media and people are fascinated with the “compassion” shown by such creatures.
Myrianthe Riddy commented on the report by (WWWA) and said: “How amazing and what a privilege to witness.”
On twitter @coryboy47 shared the story and called the encounter “amazing”.
Author Dana Loesch @DLoesch tweeted: “Nature can be pretty amazing.”
Tweep @LeadfootLesley posted: “We should all aspire to be those dolphins.”
Humpback whales are very protective of their calves. Calves whisper to their mothers to avoid being heard by other predators like killer whales, as stated in a report published by UK-based newspaper The Guardian. And mother whales touch fins with their calves as a possible sign of endearment.