Incredible Dolphin Moments | BBC Earth

Dolphins are among some of the most intelligent creatures on our planet, capable of ingenious hunting methods and playing games.

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off the coast of south africa more adolescents have reached that difficult age at two years old male bottlenose dolphins leave their mother's pod to form boisterous gangs looking for excitement they like nothing better than surfing.

Spy turtle is here to see what they get up to he in turn is joined by another spy creature this is spy puffer based on a fish that blows itself into a defensive puffball the spy creatures are here to film these.

Teenage tearaways spy puffer faces a bumpy ride bus stops are common it's easy to get caught in the middle young males are so unruly the females kick them out of the family pod this isn't spy puffer it's a real pufferfish.

The poor creature gets the same rough treatment for a game of catch but the dolphins are dicing with death are one of the most poisonous fish in the ocean they exude a powerful nerve poison called tetrodotoxin.

It only takes a small amount to kill a human even so the dolphins often look for puffer fish and love to chew on them taken in small doses the secretions seem to have a narcotic effect the dolphins are careful not to swallow them.

Instead they hold them gently in their mouths despite the risks passing the puffer has become a popular dolphin pastime luckily the little fishes usually survive the strange experience.

In western australia these dolphins have taken on an even tougher challenge the fish have taken refuge close to the beach where the water is only a few centimetres deep tail slapping is a method dolphins often use to stun their prey but it doesn't seem to work here the fish are tantalizingly close.

But they're still out of reach so the dolphins try another technique vigorously pumping their tails they work up some speed and then they hydroplane their momentum carries them right.

Through the shallowest waters and onto the fish now they're in real danger of being stranded but fortune favors the brave younger dolphins lie alongside watching but so far only eight individuals here have mastered this daring technique.

the predators ignore each other there's only one victim here the millions of tasty little fish they've been stalking for so long young gannets joined the frenzy in just six months they've become superb aerial.

Hunters time after time the dolphins round up another shoal for destruction frantically the little fish tried to get away from the seething surface of the water to dive beyond the range of the gannets now.

Something truly astonishing happens diving takes the gannets down to 10 meters then the aerial squadrons become shoals of swimmers as they pursue the fish down to 20 meters sardines joined with the predators in a beautiful yet macabre underwater valley there's little chance of escape.

For these fish the stage is set for the biggest predator of all the brood as whale takes in ten thousand fish in one giant mouthful but this time around there are plenty of.

Sardines for all hunting is only possible for three hours around low tide when the mud banks are exposed razor sharp oysters cover much of the shore beaching here could be lethal the hunters need to find a stretch of shoreline with just the right slope.

To level and the dolphins risk stranding too steep and they can't force their prey from the water working as a team the dolphins surround the fish driving them towards the shore attacking in perfect synchrony the dolphins create a bow wave.

It carries their prey onto the muddy banks other fish eaters profit from their daring herons and gulls follow every hunt to get to the fish first the dolphins drive themselves high up the bank.

But if they go too far they risk the stranding to prevent fish escaping between them the dolphins all beats themselves on the same side always the right but this has a cost each time they grab a fish they also.

Take in a mouthful of mud the grit gradually wears down their teeth but on one side only in time these teeth get so worn down that older dolphins can no longer hunt like this and must find other ways to catch fish the beaches family have a new arrival.

puck's precious eighth calf is a boy named sammy no more than a few hours old the baby instinctively shadows his mom's every move samu calls continuously to her as if to.

Say i'm here i'm here in the first hours of samo's life he is on a huge learning curve less than a meter long sammy when swimming bobbing up and down samu's movements are.

Jerky and uncoordinated this tiny dorsal fin is still floppy from being squashed up inside mum puck doesn't let her baby out of her sight for a second until now parker's chosen to be alone with samu perhaps giving him time to.

Adjust to his new world then something remarkable happens as the rest of the beachy's family start to arrive as if to celebrate puck's daughters and grandchildren are gathering to welcome the youngster into this close-knit family.

Whether she called them in will never be known but at last the rest of the beaches family meet little samuel with her family around her puck can afford to relax knowing their safety in numbers.


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Incredible Dolphin Moments | BBC Earth