When a Diver Saw a Whale in Pain, He Knew He Had to Act Fast to Cut It Free
Science & Tech| | By Jason Owen
When given the opportunity, most people are going to help an injured animal by the side of the road. A diver in the middle of the ocean did the same thing when he saw an injured whale shark.
The Smithsonian Channel caught an incredible moment on film when a group of divers came across a massive whale shark. Whale sharks feed almost exclusively on plankton and are not considered a danger to humans, which would explain why these divers chose to get so close. But as they approached the whale shark, they noticed something disturbing.
Wrapped around the body of the whale shark was a giant commercial fishing rope. As the divers got even closer, they could see the rope was embedded into the whale shark’s fins, a sign the animal had struggled with the corrosive line wrapped around its body for some time, perhaps “years” opined researchers at the Smithsonian.
While normally the whale shark might attempt to flee the group of divers, this time it must have sensed the divers were there to help it.
“Surprisingly, the goliath calmly cooperates,” the narrator in the video says as one diver swims above the fish and uses a knife to slice through the line.
Within 30 seconds, the injured whale shark is free of its suffering and gently glides away as the divers marvel at the thickness of the rope. They deserve a round of applause for their quick thinking.