Normally when we think of a beach vacation we imagine ourselves basking in the sun, cool drink in our hand and listening to the relaxing sound of the waves lapping onto the shore. In the case of a Cape Town beach goer who ended up saving not one but three lives of a majestic aquatic creature. We watch a video being taken of beach-goers viewing what was believed to be a dead shark washed on the shores of a Cape Town, South African beach. Startled when someone sees movement a man steps up to take action. A witness is wary, you can hear background commentary “I don’t think anything is in there…” but as soon as she sees the movement the American man leaps back, unable to believe his own eyes!
Immediately and without question the man in the video takes out his knife and performs the most unconventional C-section of the washed up shark. At first the video seems slightly gruesome, we are unsure if the man is actually going to perform a miracle after all, but after the first careful incision remarkably a very much alive, wiggly shark pup squirms out into the man’s hands. Careful not to get bitten as these baby pups are born with razor sharp teeth, the man takes the pup releasing it into the ocean.
What happens next is almost as amazing as the first moments of the video! A second pup, alive and well is seen being carried out of the belly of the mother shark, then a third! All are released into the ocean and the crowd eats up the moment. One spectator stated that it was “the coolest thing” she had ever seen. This stand in veterinarian became a beach going hero. He stands back and watches the pups swim happily into the ocean where they were meant to be in the first place. Ideally shark pups remain in utero with their mother for two years before being birthed. Instead of hanging around to be raised by the mother shark pups generally leave almost immediately in the wild, learning from their own instincts how to survive in the conditions they have been born into. Pups do not spend time around the mother for at times it has been known for a mother to eat her pups after birth.
Our beach hero did an honorable, brave act of kindness for helpless shark babies who would have otherwise died inside the womb of their dead mother. His actions are an example of the wonderful humanity that lives inside all of us. We are all capable of being heroes even in the most unlikely of situations.
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