Sometimes there are things you just cannot plan for. Perhaps those are the scariest moments in life, because you can’t see them coming.
This family is a perfect example of that. They went on what they thought would be a normal and fun sailing trip, but it turned into something much scarier. It wasn’t something they could predict — it was completely out of their control.
Little did this family know, their boat ride would turn into a thrilling whale rescue mission.
“I must admit I was a bit scared because I knew the whale was frightened and fatigued,” the family member shared.
“I came upon a young humpback whale that appeared to be dead. We floated next to the whale for several minutes, but we saw no signs of life,” they added.
Suddenly, when they were least expecting it, the whale slightly emerged from the water and let out a big exhale.
After seeing this, the man decided to use his snorkeling gear to slowly ease himself into the water. He went in so that he could figure out what was going on with the whale and assess the situation.
After assessing the situation, the man discovered that the whale was entangled in a gillnet (which is a type of net used by fishermen).
As the man approached the whale, their eyes met.
“There were no words we could share, but I wanted to let the whale know that we were there to help,” he said. “The situation was indeed bleak.”
The net was entangled with so much other fishing gear that it was actually being weighed down, about 15 feet below. This was dragging the whale down. Both pectoral fins were pinned to the side of his body so that he was having trouble swimming.
The gillnet was also going all the way up the whale’s back.
At first, the man was only able to get the whale’s dorsal fin free. The whale was freaking out and frankly, so was the man who was trying to help him.
He was losing hope. Although he made some progress, it was a daunting task. He needed more help, so he went back up to use the radio.
“We were told that perhaps in an hour, someone would arrive and we all knew that by then it might be too late,” he shared.
They only had one small knife but they tried to use it as best as they could from aboard, where the man pulled the net up and cut as much of it as he could.
It was a massive family effort, every single member was at the side of the boat trying to figure out what the next best move would be in this terrifying situation. In the moment, they knew that the whale knew what was going on. And they could see that the whale needed to breathe.
Suddenly, the whale began to swim a bit on its own — it got a sense of freedom. It ended up taking the family on a “Nantucket sleigh ride through the Sea of Cortez for about half a mile.”
Much to their surprise, the whale was driving the boat now! Who would’ve thought!
As the whale grew more and more tired, they began to cut the net off the tail fluke. They continued to grab and cut as much net as they could until they got so close, there was no way they were going to give up now. They were beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel, so they needed to finish what they started.
Finally they all did it and they felt a rush of happiness as they all “woo’d,” laughed, and celebrated.
“You saved a humpback whale!” A family member said to the other in disbelief.
That’s a pretty huge feat.
This family didn’t technically have to save the whale, but they remained determined and they did it because they are great people! We are so happy to see that people like this exist in the world.
See the video of the family saving the whale below. It’s epic!
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This family's boat ride turned into a dramatic whale rescue — and the whale spent an hour thanking them in the most beautiful way! 🐋💙
Posted by The Dodo on Thursday, July 5, 2018