New Zealand dolphin makes animal hero list

by Rebecca on March 31, 2011

in Animals in the News

 

Moko … stopped a whale and her calf from becoming beached.

New Zealand Press Association

WELLINGTON: Moko the New Zealand bottlenose dolphin has been named on Time magazine’s website as one of history’s most heroic animals.

 Moko, eighth on a list of ”top 10 heroic animals”, was recognised for preventing a pygmy sperm whale and her calf from beaching themselves on Mahia Beach in 2008.

 ”Successfully doing what humans could not, Moko seemed to communicate with the two whales and lead them safely back into deeper water,” the citation on the website said. 

 Time published the list after video emerged from Japan of a dog that refused to leave behind another, injured dog in the middle of the tsunami-ravaged coast north of Sendai.

 Moko the dolphin became famous between 2007 and last year for playing with humans along the east coast of the North Island.

 While Moko was in Gisborne during the summer of 2009, volunteer minders shadowed him to ensure he was kept safe over the busy summer period.

 In February last year, New Zealand’s Department of Conservation warned beachgoers to play it safe when swimming with Moko, who liked to ”borrow” bodyboards.

Other animals that made the top 10 were Alexander the Great’s horse Bucephalus; Trakr, the dog that found the last survivor in the September 11 twin tower rubble in New York and was later cloned five times; and Cher Ami, a pigeon that flew messages in France during World War I, leading to the rescue of 194 soldiers in Major Charles Whittlesey’s ”Lost Battalion”.


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