Heroic Dive: Brave Fishermen Plunge Deep to Save Endangered Northern Right Whale Trapped in Fish Gears, Capturing an Incredible Rescue

A fisherman might have saved the life of a critically endangered northern right whale on Sunday by diving overboard and using a knife to disentangle the mammal (see video).

Capt. Pat Foster and mate Adrian Colaprete were aboard the vessel Wave Runner when they encountered the whale about 50 miles off Virginia Beach, Va.

The mammal was encumbered by a rope or trap line that was dragging heavy fishing gear. The rope looks to have been inside the whale’s mouth. In the video footage it can be seen protruding from both sides of the whale at the mouth corners, with the rest of the fishing gear far below and not visible. (The rescue occurrs during the first 1:15.)

Northern right whales feed largely by skimming with their mouths open, which could explain how it became entangled in this manner.

Normally, in this type of situation, citizens should telephone NOAA Fisheries or a group trained in the rescue of large mammals.

But Foster and Colaprete decided to act quickly after identifying the struggling mammal as a northern right whale, the rarest of large whales and among the rarest of all marine mammal species.

(The whales were once hunted to the brink of extinction; there are currently about 450 in the North Atlantic.)

The entangled whale was swimming slowly so Foster was able to pilot the boat ahead of the mammal, so Colaprete could jump in with his knife.

He had planned, initially, merely to assess the situation.

“I jumped in and started swimming towards it and I couldn’t see it because I was pretty far in front of it, and then all of a sudden it came out of the gloom, and it was almost like a submarine coming at me,” he said.

He chose to cut the rope when the whale slowed even more as it swam alongside the diver.

“As soon as the whale kind of passed me and I was parallel to its face and to its eye, it kind of stopped… It kind of gave me a little window to get down there.”

As viewers can see at about the 1:05 mark, the sliced rope slides free of the whale, which then reveals its tail fluke to signal a dive.

It then disappears and Colaprete is overjoyed.

“Got it!” he exclaims from the water, to Foster on the boat. “Hey I cut the line; it slid right through its tail. It’s gone!”

Sia

Related Posts

Tearful Video: Snatched From Her Family, This Elephant Calf Has A Joyous Reunion With Her Mother After Years Apart

What starts of as a sad story of an elephant in captivity becomes one of happiness and rebirth when the baby is reunited with her mother! MeBai…

Touching Moment: Anxious Fox Watches as Rescuers Save Her Baby Trapped in Pipe, A Heartwarming Display of Maternal Love

Distressed mama fox cries out for someone to help her baby She desperately needed their help. If you happen to see one up close and personal, it’s…

Life is Strange: A Live Goat Was Given To A Tiger As Food But The Two Became Best Friends Instead

Amur, a Siberian tiger usually eats goats. That is, until he met one now named Timur. Amur lives at the Primorye Safari Park in Russia and is fed…

Video: Heroic Effort Saves Baby Goat Trapped in Hardened Tar, a Touching Tale of Rescue

“Sometimes it’s not medicine that does the trick. It’s hours of work, a pinch of luck, blended in love,” writes Animal Aid Unlimited. They are talking about…

Lonely Hearts Unite: Orphaned Baby Giraffe Bonds with Baby Elephants, Finding Companionship in Shared Similarities

At one-month-old he was too small to sleep in the giraffe stable, but was instead housed next to the elephants, where he struck up an unlikely friendship…

Incredible Video: Every morning, little boy runs down to the water and waits for giant sea animal to emerge

In the old fishing harbor of Vueltas located on La Gomera, an island in the Canary Islands, sting rays, eagle rays and Butterfly rays regularly come to…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *