Beachgoers in Argentina Kill Rare Dolphin While Taking Selfies

Newsflash: Humans are the worst.

There’s really no way around that statement following the death of a baby dolphin off the coast of Buenos Aires. An eager crowd of beachgoers kept the dolphin out of the water for a prolonged period of time so it could take pictures with the animal. By the time the selfie session was over, however, the dolphin had fatally dehydrated.

The photos of the crowd gleefully passing around the dying dolphin are almost too much to bear. How can people be so oblivious to the needs of this ailing creature just because they want to put a photo on social media?

What makes this incident extra sad is that the dolphin is a Franciscana dolphin, which is a threatened species. Presently, there are only about 30,000 Franciscana dolphins remaining; At the current rate of population decline, conservationists anticipate the number to drop to about 20,000 in the next few decades, with a chance for extinction down the road.

No dolphin can survive a prolonged period out of the water, and that is especially true of a young Franciscana dolphin. The dolphin’s fatty skin, which helps keep it warm in the ocean, also contributes to it overheating quickly when in the sun.

A video of the incident shows a man plucking the dolphin from the ocean and bringing it to the beach for children to pet. Warning: Although this video is in no way graphic, it may be too upsetting for animal lovers to watch. 

Clarin, an Argentinian newspaper, wondered whether the dolphin was already dead when it was first removed from the water. However, witnesses – as well as the initial moments of the video footage – seem to dispute this suggestion.

While there is a good chance that a dolphin that close to shore was already suffering some kind of health problems, that’s still no excuse for an untrained person to pull it from the water. That decision effectively gave the dolphin no chance for recovery.

In addition to being unsafe for the dolphin, it was unsafe for the many tourists who crowded around to touch it. “Most animals that are stranded have some kind of condition, so contact with them poses a risk to health,” said the Mundo Marino Foundation. The MMF and other conservation groups like the Argentine Wildlife Foundation have reminded the public not to touch animals in these situations and to instead contact the appropriate authorities to offer the dolphin legitimate assistance.

Let this young dolphin’s death serve as a reminder to everyone: People’s fascination with cute and rare animals may be well-intentioned, but that doesn’t give them the right to endanger those animals’ lives. All of those people that were excited to have their pictures taken with a dolphin that died mid-photo shoot should be ashamed of themselves.

Photo Credit: Hernan Coria


Siyus Copetallus
Siyus C2 years ago

Thank you for sharing.

Muff-Anne York-Haley

This is gut wrenching! Another woman in the UK killed a swN trying to take a selfie!

Nena C.
Nena C2 years ago

just so stupid what is wrong with people so consumed with themselves

Patricia Harris
John Taylor2 years ago

Gina H., you're absolutely right about that!! Humans this stupid and/or evil, has no place on this planet, they serve no purpose here except to destroy/kill, pollute, and take away everything that's far too precious to even lose!! Only the caring group of people have a place on this planet, because they know the difference between right and wrong, and they would go out of their way to make things right for the whole world!! It takes compassion, understanding, and common sense to make you human!! It doesn't take greed, stupidity or selfishness to make you human, but instead makes you a monster which doesn't belong in a civilized world!!

Sonia Minwer Barakat Requ
Sonia M2 years ago

Sad and disgusting.Petition signed thanks for sharing

Melania Padilla
Melania P2 years ago

I saw this last week... Ignorant bastards!

Neville B.
Neville B2 years ago

Thanks Valentina R.; signed.

Eleni Panagiotidou

The human stupidity has no boundaries.... Poor dolphin...

Jennifer H.
Jennifer H2 years ago

People are idiots.

Valentina R.
Valentina R2 years ago

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