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Dolphins kill each other for fun, experts say

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Caroline Weir recently photographed two dolphins repeatedly throwing and deliberately killing two of their own. Marine biologists find the behavior very confusing, since dolphins neither compete for food nor actually eat the other dolphins. Instead, these dolphins seem to be willfully killing one of their own for fun. Indeed, instead of eating the vanquished dolphin, experts point out that once the victim is dead, the dolphins lose interest in it and simply abandon it. The two aforementioned dolphins "were later washed up dead, both with horrific injuries to their heads, and deep, gaping holes around their eyes.

Experts at the Scottish Marine Animal Strandings Scheme said that the dolphins - thought to be juvenile males - were probably just playing. Although it is not precisely known why the dolphins attack, it has been likened to a 'cat and mouse' style game - similar to how humans play fight"(Williams, 2014). This is apparently not very unusual behavior for dolphins. According to a post from the Facebook page of the Scottish Marine Animal Strandings scheme, "Flippiner is not as sweet and innocent as he seems. Bottlenose dolphins regularly do this, a bit like a cat plays with a mouse. Once the porpoise is dead they lose interest. They are also known to kill infants of their own species."

Williams, Amanda (2014). Pictured: Horrific moment bottlenose dolphins attack and kill two porpoises for FUN in 'cat-and-mouse game' Retrieved from: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2572968/Pictured-Horrific-moment...

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