You may have heard of unique animal friendships. Like a tiger and a dog, a dog and a cat, a cat and a bird or something similar, but have you ever heard of an animal ADOPTING another, that too of another species?
A new research has revealed the first known case of a wild bottlenose mom adopting a calf of another species.
In 2014, researchers spotted a bottlenose mother tending to an unusual-looking calf, along with what was presumed to be her organic calf, in the coastal waters off French Polynesia.
While bottlenose dolphins have slender beaks, the mysterious month-old’s beak was short and blunt. Eventually, scientists identified the orphan as a melon-headed whale – an entirely different species and genus of dolphin.
Adoption is very rare in wild mammals, most occurring between related members of the same species.
The only other scientifically documented case involving an adopted orphan of a different species and genus dates back to 2006.