Dolphins Saved Me
By Phil Mercer BBC correspondent in Sydney
"The sharks circled Mr Dickson as he bled in the water"
An Australian fisherman, rescued after 40 hours clinging to
an upturned dinghy, says he owes his life to dolphins that
chased off a pack of circling sharks. Thirty-six-year-old
Grant Dickson's prawn trawler sank in rough seas off the
coast of northern Queensland. Two other crew members are
feared drowned. A search involving 18 aircraft covering over
2,000 square nautical miles has so far found no sign of the
Bleeding heavily and clinging to an upturned boat, Grant
Dickson described how a group of sharks had stalked him
after his fishing boat had sunk.
It was, he felt, only a matter of time before they attacked
him. Talking on Australian television, the fisherman said
one shark in particular was moving closer and closer, before
the intervention of a pod of dolphin which moved in and
scared the predators away. His ordeal lasted several more
hours as he continued to drift in the Pacific ocean.
Thoughts of his family, he said, gave him the determination
He was eventually rescued by a passing cruise ship almost
two days after his trawler sank. It went down in rough seas
after its nets had snagged on seaweed near Dunk Island,
south of Cairns. Mr Dickson, who is in hospital recovering
from exposure, has described how he managed to reach an
inflatable dinghy with another crew member, who then
disappeared after deciding to try to swim back to land. The
boat's skipper has also not been found, despite an extensive
air and sea search. Rescue teams have continued to look for
them but admit that as every hour passes, the chances of
finding the missing fishermen alive are becoming more
|Entangled Humpback Seeks Aid from
by Anni, Wade Doak's blog
A whale watching boat, "The Nautilus" was about 12 miles ENE
off Kennebunkport, Maine, when they encountered a humpback
female nicknamed "Sickle" by research biologists. This was
the first unusual clue, because they normally have to be 20
miles out before a sighting.
According to Captain Jim Harkins, whom I interviewed by
phone, he and his crew became concerned by her behavior -
she was simply "bobbing" in the water, not her usual
cavorting. He slowly approached the whale and then shut the
boat down completely.
He says that she then passed across the bow of the boat and
came along the port side and remained nearly motionless,
sidewise, about five feet away - exposing her left pectoral.
They were stunned to find the fin completely encased in 300
feet of 3/8 inch nylon fishing rope! They said it was
obvious to him, the crew and their 50 enthralled passengers
that "Sickle" was quite deliberately asking for help!
She had her spring-born calf with her, hovering within feet,
and both of them remained calm and motionless as the crew
used a gaff pole to gently and gradually dislodge all the
line from her fin, pulling it on board. He remarked that it
could have been disastrous, had she opted to thrash or move
off, because in their haste, they had it all entangled
around their feet! They were finally able to get it all off,
and cut it - to the applause and jubilation of the
And, most magically, the clearly grateful "Sickle" and her
calf decided to stay with her rescuers, hovering near the
boat for one and a half hours, as her enchanted admirers
communed with her!
|Sperm Whale Supports Japanese Dolphin
Watching Venture By Sue Arnold
Robin Mankey and I have just returned from Japan, we were
part of a small group of activists who went to Futo to
support Ishi-san, a former dolphin hunter, in his first
historic dolphin watching tour.
On Wednesday, the Japanese media turned up in their dozens
to cover the event. Two fishing vessels were turned into
dolphin watching boats for the day... us activists with a few
media on one with Ishi-san driving and the other vessel
packed with Japanese media.
Hours went by. Lots of birds, flying fish - nice scenery.
We were all getting a little nervous knowing that the
chances of seeing a dolphin at this time of the year were
only 50/50. Besides, how were we to know whether the
dolphins recognized the sounds of the engines of killer
Ten minutes before we were due to go in, the radio phone
crackled. Ishi-san got very excited yelling out - Whale..
Whale .. and pointing in the direction of the media vessel
which was some distance away. We could see a black blob in
the water. With tears pouring down his face, and all of us
standing up shrieking with excitement, we raced across the
water to see a very large SPERM WHALE circling the media
It was so close we all laughed.. .just out of touching
distance. And for the next 20 minutes that whale just
slouched around, giving the media an absolute field day. I
have never seen a whale behave that way.. not even in San
This whale knew the boat was loaded with journalists..
he/she knew how important this historic event was to whales
The next night the story went right across Japan on national
television - it was run in all the major papers.
We witnessed a miracle. Human and whale miracle.
Video about this Story
Man Saves Dolphins From
The world's tallest man saved two
dolphins by reaching into their stomachs with
his 41.7-inch arms and pulling out some plastic
they shouldn't have eaten.
According to the AP, "Bao Xishun, 54, was
confirmed last year by the Guinness Book of
World Records as the world's tallest living
man." He's 7'8" tall.
FROM STRANDING RESIGHTED
by Wade Doak
This is one of the most incredible stories we have ever put
this website; all well documented with video.
Amazingly, yesterday on 30 May 2010, Dr. Ingrid Visser, long
term orca researcher, had the male orca she helped to rescue
from stranding at Ruakaka, still with his mother and his big
brother, swim past her cliff-top house/orca research center
which is just south of Matapouri Bay on the Tutukaka Coast.
The stranding had occurred four days earlier on 26 May.
Ruakaka Beach is a few hours swim to the south and beyond
photo from off her house shows: bottom to top: big brother,
mother and her rescued younger son. How different reality is
our popular assumptions: without scientific research people seeing
this group would assume it was big daddy with his wife and
kid. But that is not how the matriarchal orca society
Daring rescue of whale
nuzzled her saviors in thanks after they
untangled her from crab lines, diver says
December 14, 2005|By
Peter Fimrite, Chronicle Staff Writer
|The Whale Movie Coming Soon
“The Whale” is a Hollywood film appearing soon. Produced by
Ryan Reynolds and Scarlett Johanssen the film is an
adaptation of a Canadian couples’ multiple award-winning
video about Luna, the young, solitary orca that invested
enormous amounts of time and energy befriending humans in
Producers Chisolm and Parfit made “Saving Luna” which aired
in Canada and abroad.
The new Hollywood version suggests that instead of looking
for intelligent life in outer space maybe we should look to
the toothed whales which, like us, have the largest, most
advanced brains on earth.
No one knows how Luna became separated from her pod in
Puget Sound, but some First Nations people of southern B.C.
resisted efforts of the government to return Luna to her
native pod because they considered him a reincarnated chief.
Caught between native traditions and wildlife bureaucrats,
Luna finally died when run over by a barge.
What is undeniable is the persistence and determination of
Luna to befriend humans, not unlike a number of solitary,
wild dolphins around the globe.
“The Whale” movie should strengthen the human/whale
connection and prompt action for cetaceans and the seas.
See video about The
Orca Rescues Boy at Sea
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