By Simon Tomlinson
Race for life: Sunbathers frantically drag a pod of around 30 dolphins back into deeper waters after they became perilously stranded on a Brazilian beach
Dragging them desperately by their tails, this is the dramatic moment beachgoers leapt into the sea to save around 30 dolphins from certain death.
The rescuers had been sunning themselves on the Rio de Janeiro coastline in Brazil when the dolphins appeared out of nowhere and suddenly beached en masse.
Initially stunned, the sunbathers soon realise the impending danger and race into the surf as the mammals let out piercing squeals of distress.
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Minutes from death: The marine mammals suddenly beached en masse on Monday after being pulled to shore by strong currents
Collective effort: Dozens of people dashed into the water as the dolphins let out high-pitched squeals in their distress
As this video shows, they make frantic efforts to grab the animals by the tails to pull them into deeper waters.
And it appears their attempts were successful as all the dolphins were rescued to rapturous cheers from onlookers.
The footage, filmed on Monday by a German tourist, has received more the one million hits on YouTube.
The dolphins were apparently caught in a strong current which meant they were unable to swim to safety.
Shock: The rescuers hjad been sunning themselves no the beach when the dolphins appeared out of nowhere
Pitching in: A man strips down to his swimming costume as he goes to lend a hand. The beachgoers were shocked to find the sudden mass arrival on the shoreline
Success: All the dolphins appeared to survive after being dragged back into the ocean, where they were able to swim off
One viewer, edpati1, said: 'Very good job! Congratulations to all involved! I wish I was there too.'
Rombilly1 added: 'Humanity at it best. Everyone who helped rescue should be very proud of themselves.
'Warmed my soul this morning.there is hope for us yet.'
Saturday, March 10, 2012
By Simon Tomlinson