A man who was out riding his personal watercraft helped free a dolphin who got tangled in a rope attached to a cage in Biscayne Bay.
Nicholas Tuduri said he was lucky he was where the dolphin was to be able to save it on Nov. 21.
“Come here, girl. I got you,” Tuduri said to the marine mammal. “I know, I know, I know. No, no, no, I got you.”
Tuduri’s video camera captured him using a knife to cut a rope wrapped around the dolphin. He then flipped his camera around to show his excitement once the animal got loose.
He said it took him and his friend nearly 10 minutes to get the dolphin untangled.
“I think once the dolphin realized that we had the cage up to the surface and he didn’t have to fight us so much to try to breathe, he just floated and stayed there with us,” Tuduri said. “It’s amazing. The dolphin was looking with its eye. It was watching us, observing us do what we were doing, and he just let us do our thing.”
About 20 minutes into their trip, he and his friend noticed the dolphin in trouble.
“Oh, yo, hey, she’s caught,” Tuduri said to his friend.
“I realized one of the dolphins wasn’t swimming normal,” Tuduri said. “He was swimming a little weird.”
The dolphin was tangled with a cage, and Tuduri jumped into the water, hoping that would help.
“When an animal is in distress, you don’t know how it’s going to react,” he said.
Tuduri described it as tiring and tough trying to free the dolphin while swimming in 15 to 20 feet of water. He then got back onto the personal watercraft to continue cutting the rope.
“I do hope that any other Jet Skier that are watching this, I do hope if you find yourself in that situation, you would take the same action,” he said.
The biggest reward for Tuduri was bonding with the dolphin following the rescue.
“It must have been maybe seven or eight of them came right up to my Jet Ski and started swimming with my Jet Ski,” he said. “I think they were thanking me.”
Tuduri added that he is out on the water a lot, and he has never experienced a situation like that.
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