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View Full Version : Dolphin Bites 8 Year Old Girl at SeaWorld Orlando



Wendy
05-12-2012, 10:09 PM
Jillian Thomas loves dolphins, so her parents planned a trip to SeaWorld so she could see her favorite animals. When she had fed her fish to the dolphins she lifted the plate to show her mum it was empty, the dolphin jumped out of the water and shut its mouth around her hand. Jillian's dad, Jamie Thomas, was videoing and caught the whole incident on camera.

"The first thing I thought was I would have to jump in the water and save my daughter's life," Thomas said. "I literally thought she was going to be pulled into the water."

Amy Thomas said they each paid $7 extra to feed fish to the dolphins at the popular attraction. Guests are given instructions not to wear loose jewelry, touch the dolphin’s head and, under any circumstances, move the paper tray holding the fish from the edge of the pool.

“I am such an overprotective parent that if I knew my child might get bitten I would not have even let my daughter do this,” she said. “But I felt safe. Everyone just imagines dolphins as smiling, nonbiting animals with knobby teeth. You forget these are wild animals.”

It was the second time that day her daughter had visited the dolphin cove and Jillian may have forgotten the rules in her excitement, her mother said.

“The second it happened, one of the employees came over to Jillian to ask her if she had a positive experience and realized she was bleeding,” Amy Thomas said. “(Jillian) made a mistake, but you can’t hold a minor responsible for that.”

A first-aid provider treated Jillian’s wounds and asked if she had had a tetanus shot, but her parents were told they had no reason to worry.

They expected a manager to talk to them but they were given ice and a bandage, the family said.

“It was strange how they downplayed the whole thing,” Thomas said. “At the time we thought we were at fault but these are children. We just want other parents to know the dangers.”

When he asked employees whether bites occurred frequently, they replied that it was rare.

The Atlanta-area family said they don’t plan taking any legal action against the theme park but would like officials to either raise the age for children participating in the attraction and remind parents that dolphins bite.

SeaWorld officials said in a statement they had not seen the video but are taking the matter seriously.

“Nothing is more important to us than the health and safety of our guests, employees and animals,” the statement said.




http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RuHukmicDY8

Lisa1976
05-12-2012, 10:19 PM
I read about this too, talk about blown out of proportion. The kid was waving that box about, not paying any attention, poor dolphin probably thought it was a fish.

keith
05-12-2012, 10:56 PM
Yeah totally

foreverducky
06-12-2012, 12:00 AM
I agree.

Esmeralda
06-12-2012, 09:17 AM
I saw this on video clip and the dolphin was going for the tray thinking it still had fish in it... it accidentaly caught the girls hand in its mouth by doing that. It was NOT attacking the girl... all blown out of proportion as usual. The girl didn't want a fuss made of it, it was the parents hell bent on taking a video of the hand, she was asking why do they need a video of it and I heard her Dad say... it's very important.

I immediately thought... oh oh... compensation claim coming.....

Give me a break.......

uscwest
06-12-2012, 09:17 AM
They actually interviewed the little girl on the Today show. She didn't think much of it herself and even knew what she had done wrong. She said it wasn't the dolphin's fault.

Esmeralda
06-12-2012, 09:20 AM
Exactly! It was the parents who got hysterical about it.

Slowhand
06-12-2012, 10:28 AM
I immediately thought... oh oh... compensation claim coming.....



:Iagree: The whole thing seems a bit "fishy" to me. :lol:

Tink
06-12-2012, 10:46 AM
If Seaworld isn't going to have enough workers present to guard against a child's natural behavior with dolphins who have their own set of natural behaviors, then they need to change the way they do things.

Those are wild animals penned up in small areas and fed by people of any age who do not know what they are doing.

Is it the dolphin's "fault?" Of course not. Nor is it the child's. Now that it's happened, Seaworld needs to put other measures in place. Don't permit the paper containers on the edge, have a different set up. Something.

The dolphins need as much protection as do the visitors.

Wendy
06-12-2012, 02:00 PM
If Seaworld isn't going to have enough workers present to guard against a child's natural behavior with dolphins who have their own set of natural behaviors, then they need to change the way they do things.

Those are wild animals penned up in small areas and fed by people of any age who do not know what they are doing.

Is it the dolphin's "fault?" Of course not. Nor is it the child's. Now that it's happened, Seaworld needs to put other measures in place. Don't permit the paper containers on the edge, have a different set up. Something.

The dolphins need as much protection as do the visitors.

:yes: completely agree.

Esmeralda
06-12-2012, 03:50 PM
The price of those fish trays has gone up considerably and I felt that it was just a money making ploy, so don't think they'll be getting rid of it.

Wendy
06-12-2012, 04:30 PM
The price of those fish trays has gone up considerably and I felt that it was just a money making ploy, so don't think they'll be getting rid of it.

Definitely, you have to line up and pay for food now to be able to get close to the dolphins.

Kate
06-12-2012, 07:00 PM
We've never paid out extra to do things like this, i dont believe in it, we've had to pay enough to go there without paying extra ontop!
But imo this was just "one of those things", they knew what the child should and shouldnt have been doing and the dolphin just saw the tray and thought about the fish! The little girl was just being a little girl and the dolphin being a dolphin

Britchick
06-12-2012, 08:51 PM
I got attacked by one of the birds by the sea lions because I was hesitant once. Easily done

Dawn
07-12-2012, 07:57 AM
We only ever pay to feed the stingrays because it's such a weird experience. :lol:

Shellyamc
07-12-2012, 04:10 PM
I can see the wisdom behind reminding people that these are animals and not a toy, but I don't think there is much to this story beyond that. The girl made a mistake and the dolphin reacted.

If they don't want you to move the paper plate, then sink a bucket into the ledge and put each person's fish in that, or put a "slide" of sorts in where you slide the fish down and the dolphin gets it at the bottom.

Tink
07-12-2012, 04:18 PM
I can see the wisdom behind reminding people that these are animals and not a toy, but I don't think there is much to this story beyond that. The girl made a mistake and the dolphin reacted.

If they don't want you to move the paper plate, then sink a bucket into the ledge and put each person's fish in that, or put a "slide" of sorts in where you slide the fish down and the dolphin gets it at the bottom.

Exactly, Shelly! Don't make a child responsible for understanding and remembering animal behavior. The child is excited, and should not be held any more responsible than the dolphin!

I believe this situation can be termed an attractive nuisance, meaning that the child was injured as a result of the vendor's failure to protect the customer from a problem CREATED BY the "display."

Britchick
07-12-2012, 04:41 PM
Does this apply to my bird attack too?

Tink
07-12-2012, 06:23 PM
I would rather think it did. If you are not used to birds swooping down and aggressively trying to take what you have, then yes. The place that sets up the process that causes that, should be responsible for ADEQUATELY warning you.

If you choose to ignore the warnings, then no.

foreverducky
07-12-2012, 07:01 PM
Can the dolphin sue for pain and anguish? :lol:

Britchick
08-12-2012, 02:11 AM
Lol Billie

Esmeralda
08-12-2012, 02:05 PM
Well it was expecting some more fish so I think it should sue for mental distress too.