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Sick kiwis harm generous dolphin

Posted by te2ataria on December 20, 2008

Moko the friendly dolphin brings fish to swimmers, but she is  roughly treated in return

moko-the-friendly-dolphin
Moko the dolphin frolics with swimmers at Mahia Beach, where the friendly bottlenose dolphin continues to wow the crowds. Photo: GLENN SIMMERS/Wairoa Star. Image may be subject to copyright.

Moko, a three-year-old bottlenose dolphin,  has been swimming off  Mahia Beach for more than 18 months.

Moko is a generous dolphin, according to a local authority staff member.

“She has actually been bringing fish to people. People have had kahawai and gurnard brought to them and some lucky people have had him bring them seahorses,” he said.

Unfortunately, swimmers have been “roughhousing” with Moko, scarring his skin with scratches caused by sharp fingernails and jewelery.

“We are a bit concerned that some people are getting into rough play with him – they jump on his back or grab his dorsal fin,” another local official said.

“She can play rough right back – she’s a big, powerful animal, she probably weighs 150 kilograms. She could damage someone.


Moko, a bottlenose who normally spends his time playing, bailed out two pygmy sperm whales that humans were struggling to help.The whales, a mother and calf, were stranded on Mahia Beach and had been in the care of human rescuers for over an hour. Initally successful, the workers were horrified to see the whales beach themselves again on a sandbar four times, indicating that they were probably on their way to an agonizing, complex death. It was at that point, Moko, who was described by an official on the scene as “altruistic” appeared, and let the pygmy sperm whales 200 yards down the beach to an open channel. There have been many instances of dolphins assisting weak swimmers, which may be instinctual, but this appears to be the first instance of interspecies help. Source of image and caption. May be subject to copyright.

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9 Responses to “Sick kiwis harm generous dolphin”

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  3. te2ataria said

    Annoying swimmer held “captive” by angry Moko
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10586923

  4. […] Moko, a bottlenose who normally spends her time playing, bailed out two pygmy sperm whales that humans were struggling to help.The whales, a mother and calf, were stranded on Mahia Beach and had been in the care of human rescuers for over an hour. [Via NewZeelend] […]

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  6. […] But the one that really caught our eye was this one researched by our friend TEAA: […]

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  9. Kiwi in oz said

    How sad for Moko. Dolpins are treasured here in Australia at Monkey Mia, Humans are so careless, and unthoughtful at times. Dolphins are a beautiful gift from the sea. Shame on you people in NZ,
    Australia is a much better and caring country than NZ.
    RIP Moko

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