Wednesday, February 9, 2011

It IS All Worth It!

2000: That was then...
Those who've participated in a whale rescue may wonder if the refloated mammals actually survive? Detractors call it a waste of effort... well, here's a story that's both motivating and proof that whale rescues can be successful!
Back in November 2000, a large humpback stranded on a beach in Brazil. A 100-strong rescue team worked for twelve hours to return it to the ocean. Then last year - a decade later - the rescued whale was sighted again!
To make absolutely certain of its identity, biologists collected skin samples for genetic analysis. The confirmation is extremely satisfying: never before has a rescued whale been re-encountered after so long. The news gives hope to those who continue to devote their time to saving beached whales.
2010: This is now...
As we know only too well in NZ, the odds that a whale will survive after beaching are quite slim. Some question if the effort is worth it, believing the animals are sick or injured, and would probably die anyway. But for the volunteers who struggle in the surf to rescue these majestic creatures, the slightest chance of success is always worth the sweat, and often tears. And with a fleeting glimpse of one such rescued whale swimming happily, they'll carry on knowing that they do not toil in vain.
(...many thanx to Treehugger)

For more uplifting whale-oriented stories like this, check out the Underwater Times...

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