Dolphins are normally cast as the good guys, maybe it’s the perpetually smiling face that helps. And while they are undoubtedly inquisitive and often seem friendly, we shouldn’t forget that they are wild animals.
Earlier this week in New Zealand a swimmer had to be rescued after a dolphin which has been named Moko wouldn’t let her return to the beach. Moko hangs around Mahia beach, east of Wairoa on the east coast of the North Island, and has a habit of playing with swimmers. On this occasion, when a swimmer tried to get back to shore, Moko kept diving next to her and circling her. Eventually she had to grab hold of a buoy and shout for help. Despite having a wetsuit she was cold and exhausted, but was eventually rescued by some people in a dinghy.
So no matter how cuddly dolphins might appear, we should not forget that they are powerful marine predators who may not be aware of our limitations in the water.
For more information there is an article in the New Zealand Herald, from where I borrowed the above photograph.