Dolphins are among the smartest creatures in the animal kingdom, and they also do a great job of staying together.
These majestic mammalians can almost always be found swimming in groups, whether they’re frolicking in the ocean or defending themselves against predators like sharks.
Because of this as well as their jovial and lighthearted nature, dolphins are also some of the most favorite animals among tourists.
Many dolphins have taken to building relationships with humans along the shoreline, who seemingly live for a glimpse of their human friends.
This special relationship has caused many dolphins to win the affection of people everywhere, but there are some who go about it differently than others.
Meet Mystique — a 29-year-old male humpback dolphin who has become a worldwide sensation as the a dolphin treasure hunter.
Meet Mystique — The Sweet Talkin’ Dolphin
Mystique has spent extra time attempting to woo visitors during the lockdown, hoping to sweet talk them into bringing him more fish.
He’s had to adjust his tactics during the controversial “lockdowns” that have robbed the area of many of its visitors by showing his generosity — this time in the form of treasures from the bottom of the ocean.
Mystique has created a one-stop shop for all the latest tourist wares, with one caveat: he’s the one doing the shopping.
The playful fan favorite uses his mouth and nose to transport from pieces of wood, shells sea glass and corals that it masterfully balances until it is delivered into the hands of the local visitors.
Each time an employee or other person approaches the shore to greet him and play, the grateful dolphin usually rewards him with a special gift.
He then plunges into the depths of the sea to collect the most curious items to share with visitors.
According to Lyn McPherson, a volunteer dolphin feeder, Mystique had displayed this behavior before, but ramped up his activity during the coronavirus situation to ensure a steady stream of attention.
The friendly dolphin has become a local celebrity of sorts.
The creature often surprises the visitors with his detailed and intelligent mind.
He seems to remember things that others may forget.
“One male dolphin brings in objects on his rostrum, or beak, and then he carefully presents them to us,” McPherson said.
“What we have to do is give him a fish in return. We haven’t trained him, but he has trained us to do this.
“He gets under it [and] if he drops it too far out, or we say ‘come on, that’s not good enough’, then he gets underneath it and brings it to us.”
Mystique is yet another example of the friendship and joy that dolphins provide us with each day.
While he’s been described as the oddball of the group, his human friends love him for it.
And he’s yet another important reminder that there are few things more important than preserving our oceans, which provide habitats for these incredible creatures.