Last week, a baby dolphin was found on at beach of the Santa Teresita resort, located in Argentina. Tourists saw the baby dolphin and did what tourists do – they took pictures of the poor animal. It turns out that the baby dolphin died because the people on the beach kept out of the water too long.
Here is the photo taken by one a person on the beach:
Here is video footage of the incident:
The Wildlife Foundation in Argentina found photos and video of the tourists tormenting the dolphin. They took the opportunity to try to raise awareness about the type of dolphin and what people need to do when they find a dolphin on the beach. They write in a press release:
“[The]Franciscan or Plata dolphin is one of the smallest dolphins in the world, is between 1.30 and 1.70 m long. His skin, brown tones, reminiscent of the habit of the Franciscan monks, so it gets the common name. Only it is found in Argentina, Uruguay and Brazil. In our country lives mainly off the coasts of the province of Buenos Aires, where it is very likely that there are less than 30,000 individuals. Franciscan in a vulnerable to extinction, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).”
— Vida Silvestre (@Vida_Silvestre) February 17, 2016
The fact that this species of dolphin is endangered makes the dolphin’s death just that much more tragic.
“This incident should help the public understand the urgent need to return these dolphins to the sea when they get close to the shore,” the foundation said. “The Franciscana, like other species, cannot remain for much time outside of the water, it has thick skin full of fat which regulates its body temperature, so taking it out of the water rapidly causes it to dehydrate and die.”
What those people did is absolutely horrendous. Hopefully, this tragedy will raise awareness about what people should do when they encounter beached marine life.
Featured image from video screen capture