No has ever accused dolphins of not behaving peculiarly. Dolphin behavior has always fascinated mankind, a species with which they seem to identify. Dolphins have even been known to save lives of swimmers in danger. There are thousands of recordings of dolphin saving humans from drowning and the dangers of wildlife.
As far back as ancient Greece, there has been documentation of dolphins saving humans. Back in 2000, for example, a fourteen year old was drowning after falling from his father’s boat in the Adriatic Sea. To the rescue was a very instinctual dolphin, which not only pushed the boy to the surface but right to the waiting hand of the rescuer. By many accounts, dolphins can even sense and protect humans from shark attacks.
Seasoned in fending off sharks to protect their own young, dolphins are very in tune with the threat of shark attacks. Off the coast of New Zealand back in November of 2004, for example, four swimmers a hundred meters offshore were surrounded by what seemed a pod of playful dolphins. The dolphins were circling the swimmers in an increasingly tighter circumference. It was then they realized the dolphins were protecting them from an approaching great white. The dolphins didn’t abandoned their vigil until the shark lost interest and swam off.
And it’s not only humankind dolphins seem to have a heart for. There is actually documentation of dolphin helping save fellow members of the animal kingdom. For example, there was an instance of dolphins ‘herding’ about 80 beached pilot whales out to sea, effectively saving their lives.
On the north cost of New Zealand in 1983, pilot whales had become beached and disorientated. They were stranded until high tide at the earliest, but with that being hours away, the outlook was grim at best. But the through the mystery of the animal world, a passing dolphin pod figured out he pilot whales were in distress and they immediately sprang into action. Swimming into the shallows, they were able to effectively push the stranded herd back out to see, saving each one of them.
Protecting dolphin is the right thing to because they care about protecting you. And it’s actually very likely you will experience a dolphin encounter in the warm shallows off the Florida coast. This is due in great part to bow-riding, whereby they swim in a boat or PWC wake to conserve energy. So when you are out enjoying the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico or Tampa Bay, remain vigilant and aware you are sharing these waters with up to as many as 45,000 bottlenose dolphin.