Just trying to get close, babe.
Five scared swimmers had to be rescued from the waters off of Galway in Ireland this week because they were scared by an "intimidating dolphin."
Galway RNLI described witness reports of the incident, "the dolphin had circled the swimmers then swam at them in an intimidating way and glancing off them, coming and going, with his tail and nose."
Witnesses alerted the Valentia Coastguard, who then called in the Galway lifeboat station.
Mike Swan (no relation), Operations Manager at Galway Lifeboat Station told the Independent, "Before we arrived, the dolphin apparently approached the swimmers and essentially began to round them up. It wasn’t exactly an attack but the dolphin began prodding and slapping them with its flipper.”
This does sound pretty terrifying... and embarrassing. No one wants their night to end by getting bitch-slapped by a dolphin.
But what was on that dolphin's mind? What did he want?
Dolphins are constantly complimented on their hunting technique of herding fish together into a devour-able cluster. Is that what this dolphin intended? Was that dolphin going to eat those people?
Not necessarily, he could have just wanted to maim them for no reason. According to an old NY Times article, dolphins have been found to have "murderous urges unrelated to the need for food."
So, this dolphin was going through some stuff, and was looking to work out his misplaced aggression on the limbed freaks who didn't realize they'd swam into the wrong part of the water.
Or, maybe, the dolphin was just looking for some very precious and very gentle sex.
Before things got to that next level, a fishing vessel got in between the swimmers and the finned assailant. Eventually the lifeboat sent by the coastguard joined them, and the two boats kept the dolphin at bay until the swimmers were able to get safely to shore.
Swan reported that, "The swimmers were very shook up by the incident and one in particular was very shocked but did not require medical assistance."
I can almost hear the PTSD support group testimonial from that one in particular now. "It was awful! He smiled so wide but it was a lie!"
(by Myka Fox)