South Florida police officer rescues young dolphin trapped in fishing net: 'I got you, buddy'

Even dolphins need a helping hand sometimes.

A Miami-Dade police officer rescued a dolphin that had become tangled up in a fishing net. Recently released body-cam footage shows the officer working to free the trapped animal as it struggled in the water.

The incident occurred on Dec. 10, 2021, but the footage was only just released on the Miami-Dade Police Department’s Facebook page. According to the post, Officer Nelson Silva of the Marine Patrol Unit came across the trapped animal after responding to reports of a dolphin in distress.

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In the footage, Silva can be seen piloting the boat to the area and visually locating the dolphin. Silva could only get the boat so close, so he had to turn the engine off and drift towards the panicked animal.

Fortunately, he was able to get close enough to grab the net with a long pole. After pulling the dolphin in close to the boat, Silva began cutting it free from the net with his knife.

Silva was able to cut the dolphin free after several attempts. (Miami-Dade Police Department)

After cutting some net away, the dolphin tried to swim off while still being partially tangled. After the dolphin briefly disappeared under the boat, Silva was able to get regain control and finish cutting the net away.

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While he was able to free the dolphin without the animal suffering any injuries, Silva appeared to have cut his finger during the ordeal. Once the dolphin was freed, however, he didn’t seem to mind the injury.

"I got you, buddy," the Miami-Dade Police Department wrote on Facebook. "Officer Nelson Silva, of our Marine Patrol Unit, received a call of a dolphin in distress in the Shorecrest area. Officer Silva located a juvenile dolphin that was trapped in a fishing net. Watch the video to see how Officer Silva helped free the dolphin."

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