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The Whale Said Thank You

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More from the 'our rubbish is killing the wildlife' files. An email has been doing the rounds about a front page story in the San Francisco Chronicle, about a female humpback whale that had become entangled in a spider web of crab traps and lines.She was weighted down by hundreds of pounds of traps that caused her to struggle to stay afloat.

She also had hundreds of yards of line rope wrapped around her body, her tail, her torso, a line tugging in her mouth.

A fisherman spotted her just east of the Farallon Islands (outside the Golden Gate ) and radioed an environmental group for help.

Within a few hours, the rescue team arrived and determined that she was so badly off, the only way to save her was to dive in and untangle her. They worked for hours with curved knives and eventually freed her.

When she was free, the divers say she swam in what seemed like joyous circles. She then came back to each and every diver, one at a time and nudged them, pushed them gently around…she was thanking them.

Urban legend or not?
According to the San Francisco Chronicle article from December 14, 2005, this story is true although animal experts say nobody knows what was happening in the mind of the whale when these incidents took place. 

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