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Woman's Quest to Save Dolphin Began With Wrong Turn: 'We Hope She'll Reunite With Her Family'


A wrong turns led to a step in the right direction for a pair of photographers credited with rescuing a beached dolphin.

After a long day of photographing orcas in Scotland Sunday, the last thing Lorraine Culloch and Mike Robertson wanted was for their car’s navigation system to send them in the wrong direction.

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Culloch and Robertson ended up on the cove of a nearby river when they noticed a 4-year-old bottle-nose dolphin stranded on the beach near shallow waters off the coast of Aberdeen.

“We got lost because the GPS route was going nowhere,” Culloch told InsideEdition.com.  “That’s when I noticed the shape of a dolphin in the distance.”

The thought of turning around and heading toward a different route never entered Culloch’s mind. Instead, the duo's first instinct was to see if the animal was still alive.

“We rushed toward the animal and saw that she wasn’t moving,” Culloch said.

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Although she appeared to be breathing, they weren’t sure how much longer the dolphin would remain alive due to the blisters on her skin after being out of the water for a long period of time.

Culloch immediately called the authorities, the British Divers Marine Life Rescue (BDMLR) and the SSPCA. Within minutes they arrived to aid the injured dolphin.

“They took charge as Mike and I stood by her side,” said Culloch. “It took 10 hours for the tide to come in; she was a little disoriented but stayed calm and trusted us enough to help her.”

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The rescue team then covered the dolphin with towels and seaweed to keep the dolphin’s skin moist. On the cusp of dawn, the dolphin regained her strength enough to swim and the team guided her away from the bay and into the ocean.

“We named her Spirtle,” Culloch said. “We hope she’ll reunite with her family.”

Although they ended up on the wrong path, Culloch and Robertson never expected to become a part of this remarkable dolphin tale.

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