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Dolphin Dies After Crowd of Tourists Passed It Around, Took Selfies With It


"Wild animals are not toys or photo props."

Image via Instagram

A dolphin died last week after a mob of beachgoers tossed the tiny creature around and took selfies with it.

The incident began when a group of tourists at a Buenos Aires resort pulled two Franciscana dolphins out of the water and proceeded to aggressively handle them. The Franciscana dolphin is one of the smallest dolphins in the world.

A photo posted by Maarttina (@martudiiaz) on

After the tourists took turns parading the dolphins around, “at least one of the animals died,” according to the Argentine Wildlife Foundation.

A spokeswoman for Australia's arm of World Animal Protection condemned the behavior of the beachgoers who used the animals "for entertainment purposes.”

"This terribly unfortunate event is an example of the casual cruelty people can inflict when they use animals for entertainment purposes, without thinking of the animal's needs," she told ABC. "At least one of these dolphins suffered a horrific, traumatic and utterly unnecessary death, for the sake of a few photographs.”

A photo taken by a witness named Hernan Coria showed enthusiastic individuals struggling to take selfies and touch a tiny dolphin, seemingly forgetting that the animal can only survive out of water for a short amount of time.

"They have very thick and greasy skin that provides warmth, so the weather will quickly cause dehydration and death," the Argentine Wildlife Foundation told ABC.

"Wild animals are not toys or photo props. They should be appreciated and left alone — in the wild where they belong," the World Animal Protection spokeswoman said.

And the Internet has not reacted happily either:

According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature, Franciscana dolphins are usually found in Argentina, Uruguay and Brazil, and are in danger of extinction.

(H/T: ABC)

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