A woman named Grace Shugg has faced a wave of criticism from TikTokers after sharing a video of herself encountering a pod of approximately 60-80 dolphins while out at sea. Grace, accompanied by her partner Tom O’Keefe, stumbled upon the marine mammals while riding a jet ski.
The 22-year-old woman, filled with awe, decided to jump into the water and experience the rare encounter firsthand. The exhilarating moment left her “shaking” from the adrenaline rush.
However, the video quickly garnered attention and concerned viewers flocked to warn against swimming with dolphins. The footage has amassed 2 million views and 290,000 likes, sparking a debate about the potential dangers of such interactions.
“I was thrilled to see so many dolphins in the water,” Grace shared with NeedToKnow.co.uk. “In that moment, I felt it was right to jump in and swim with them. It was an incredibly exhilarating experience.”
But not all viewers shared Grace’s enthusiasm. Terrified by the encounter, many expressed their fear of dolphins and cautioned against getting too close to them. Some comments highlighted the perceived ruthlessness of dolphins compared to sharks.
“People are clueless about how strong dolphins can be,” one comment read. Another person jokingly remarked, “‘Oh sharks! So cute!’ ‘Dolphins, run for your life’.”
The initial confusion in the video also sparked some comments, as viewers mistook a fin in the water for a shark before the dolphins emerged.
Grace, who originally filmed the footage in April near Fingal Beach on the Gold Coast, Australia, was taken aback by the response to her video, which has since gone viral on TikTok. The influencer from Queensland expressed her surprise at the fears associated with dolphins, emphasizing that she had a positive experience swimming with them.
“I didn’t know if the comments were serious at first, but after thousands of accounts expressed their fears about dolphins and their behavior towards other marine life, I was definitely shocked to discover they are considered bullies of the ocean,” Grace said.
Despite the backlash, Grace’s love for the ocean remains unwavering, and she would still engage in similar experiences, albeit with more caution in the future.
While some TikTok users defended dolphins, labeling them as harmless and enjoyable companions, the debate surrounding dolphin encounters continues.