Tsunami-stranded porpoise rescued from rice paddy 1.2 miles from coast
Ryo Taira rescues a young finless porpoise from a flooded rice paddy.
March 24th, 2011
10:01 AM ET

Tsunami-stranded porpoise rescued from rice paddy 1.2 miles from coast

A young finless porpoise was rescued this week from a flooded rice paddy in Ishinomaki, Japan - where it had apparently been dumped by the March 11 tsunami - and released into the ocean, according to news reports.

Pet-shop owner Ryo Taira told Reuters a motorist spotted the animal in a field two kilometers (1.2 miles) from the coast on Tuesday. The man called Taira, who has been coming to the aid of animal victims of the earthquake and tsunami.

Tairo said he waded into the field and grabbed the porpoise.

"It was pretty weak by then, which was probably the only reason we could catch it," Reuters quoted him as saying.

He wrapped the creature  in towels, took it to the ocean and released it, he said, because facilities to help ailing animals have been damaged or destroyed by the tsunami and quake, according to an Agence France Presse report on AsiaOne.com.

"I don't know if it will live, but it's certainly a lot better than dying in a rice paddy," Tairo told the Asahi Shimbun, according to the Reuters report.

Finless porpoises, distinguished by their lack of a dorsal fin, inhabit shallow coastal waters of the Indian and western Pacific Oceans, according to marinebio.org.

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Filed under: 2011 tsunami • Animals • Japan • World
soundoff (98 Responses)
  1. Cesar r

    Some of you morons, and that's what some of you are, MORONS, act as if there is a shortage on blogg space. Guess what? There is no shortage on space. I enjoyed the story and I will read it again, print it, and frame it. IF you do NOT like it, that's your problem. Furthermore, if the story of a poor helpless defenseless animal is so offensive to you, go elsewhere!

    March 24, 2011 at 1:21 pm | Report abuse |
  2. cindym

    good luck little guy!

    March 24, 2011 at 1:21 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Cesar r

    Oh Dave is so right. I would have found it heartwarming if Dave would have been used to feed cannibals at a cannibal shelter. I have a feeling That Pets R Fun and others on here would condemn such an action, and play the "higher power" card against that too.

    March 24, 2011 at 1:31 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Farmer Dave

    I’ve rescued animals before and probably would have done the same thing … unless my family was hungry, or I knew that other people nearby might be hungry because a 9.0 earthquake and subsequent Tsunami wiped out just about everything about a week earlier. In that case, I’d probably dispatch the animal as quickly and painlessly as possible and donate it to one of the many shelters. But hey, that’s just me.

    It was still a nice heartwarming story especially for the average American who doesn’t have a clue where their food comes from.

    March 24, 2011 at 1:31 pm | Report abuse |
  5. whatever

    Have to love people saving animals when they could be helping other people.

    March 24, 2011 at 1:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • Alex

      mankind doesn't deserve it

      March 24, 2011 at 2:05 pm | Report abuse |
  6. lmg

    Animals are God's creatures too.

    March 24, 2011 at 1:37 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Farmer Dave

    Geroge wrote:

    "There are 7 billion humans on the planet. The global population of saltware finless porpoises is a tiny, tiny fraction of that. The life of a single finless porpoise is worth the lives of tens of thousands of humans. That's an objective fact. Deal with it."

    I take back what i said earlier. THAT is the dumbest thing I ever saw on one of these comment strings. right out of the PETA playbook.

    "Geroge," of who gets to pick the "tens of thousands" who are worth less than that single porpoise who might not survive anyway?

    We've learned that Porpoise are not fish on this thread. I'm here to tell you that they aren't human, either.

    It's true that the planet is overpopulated with humans I say that about 4 billion should just kill themselves and those that can't spell "George" should go first.

    March 24, 2011 at 1:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • So What!!


      I didn't know if he was trying to spell George, or some whacked out version of Garage.

      March 24, 2011 at 1:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • Alex

      and I'll be happy to take you out little farmer boy

      March 24, 2011 at 2:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • kunter

      Geroge (? perhaps this is how he prefers his name) is mistaken; we are not over-populated, we are too much disorganized... and so is the farmer – he is also incorrect; it is not about the creature, even not about any human lives (from the God's perspective) it is the realization of humanly manners, this is about what we do (sit and chat? or go get use of something). In my opinion...

      March 24, 2011 at 4:26 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Mike

    Nice to see that someone gives a crap about more than just themselves. Good Karma is the way I live! Help others and someday they will help you, somehow, someway. 🙂

    March 24, 2011 at 1:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • Farmer Dave

      I agree, I think.

      Maybe they won't help you in return personally, and I don't know if you would call it karma or not, but I always say: What goes around comes around.

      March 24, 2011 at 1:51 pm | Report abuse |
  9. flynn

    We all have a porpoise in life

    March 24, 2011 at 1:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • KatCiao

      Amen brother!

      March 24, 2011 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • CC Croft

      lol! that was great! Thank you. 🙂

      March 24, 2011 at 2:47 pm | Report abuse |
  10. KatCiao

    "weep with those who weep, rejoice with those who rejoice" and likewise: "do not rejoice in evil" our Heavenly Father loves animals as well. ALL of creation is groaning and waiting for the day when it is released from it's captivity. Abba, bless Tairo, give him strength for the task You've raised him up to do. Thank You also, for all those You've raised up to feed and give aid to every precious soul affected by this catastrophe. In Jesus name, Amen.

    March 24, 2011 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Gina

    Its so nice to have people like this in the world! Poor creature! I hope it will survive!

    March 24, 2011 at 2:09 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Karen

    Thank the lord for people like this young man who realize that saving animals is the way to saving our planet.

    March 24, 2011 at 2:15 pm | Report abuse |
  13. p.l.u.r.

    Let's just focus on the positive and forget about the negative guy. Perhaps he's having a bad day.

    March 24, 2011 at 4:11 pm | Report abuse |
  14. kunter

    He has represented the entire humanity, I thank him on this behalf! ("if any of you save one human life, he/she will have saved all the humans" – Qur'an, also with a vice-versa statement)

    March 24, 2011 at 4:35 pm | Report abuse |
  15. kado

    Forget the sushi AND the bible-thumpers. It's great that the motorist called the pet shop guy and that he took action. Good man! Whether the porpoise survives or not, it won't die in a rice paddy. PS: I know education is lacking these days, but this is CNN so you really can't expect that much anyway. 🙂

    March 30, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
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