A baby dolphin died after a group of tourists were taking selfies with it on a beach in Argentina (video below).
On Jan. 22, tourists in San Bernardo, a city located about 200 miles south of Buenos Aires, dragged the dolphin from the ocean to the beach, where they proceeded to take pictures with it, according to a report in La Capital, as translated by National Geographic.
A YouTube video was posted of the scene, which shows a crowd of people standing and kneeling around the dolphin, touching and petting it.
“They let him die,” one witness told C5N, according to National Geographic. “He was young and came to the shore. They could have returned him to the water — in fact, he was breathing. But everyone started taking photos and touching him. They said he was already dead.”
This is not the first time a baby dolphin has died in Argentina because of selfie-seeking tourists. In February 2016, an endangered La Plata dolphin was killed on a beach in Santa Teresita after being passed around until it died of dehydration.
“I don’t think anyone intended to harm the animal, but the excitement and thrill drew people in,” Neil D’Cruze, head of Wildlife Policy and Research at World Animal Protection, UK, told National Geographic. “It shows that interaction with a wild animal in its habitat can be just as terrible and deadly as having these animals in captivity.”
The latest dolphin death prompted social media users to express their feelings.
“See? This is why I don’t want to contribute to human reproduction. Because humanity translated means stupidity,” one user tweeted, as translated by RT.
“You’re really going to kill an animal for a crappy selfie? Are you seriously that stupid?” another tweeted.
The Wildlife Foundation of Argentina posted a tweet asking people to avoid picture-taking behavior with animals: “If you see an animal on the beach, don’t take a photo. Situations like this can kill them.”
Sources: National Geographic (2), YouTube, RT / Photo credit: Hernan Coria/CEN via Daily Mail