It’s amazing when communities come together to save someone in need. Take, for example, the community of Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk in far east Russia.

When four killer whales were trapped in the ice off Southeast Sakhalin Island, volunteers quickly came together to save them. While three of them were able to swim away, one remained trapped, unable to move. It’s possible that there was a fifth whale, whose fate remains unknown.

The amazing rescue team worked for eight hours to keep the big male whale alive, despite his exhaustion.

The whale was so weak that he rolled on his side. The team immediately entered the water to turn him straight.

As the rescue mission entered nighttime, the sea began to rise, and some of the ice began to clear. The team stayed with the whale and began to clear the remaining ice. But even as the waters reached about two meters deep, the whale still could not move.

The team tried to guide him to no avail … but amazingly, after several hours, the whale began moving and swam off into the open sea! Check out the rescue in action!

We’re so thankful to the amazing group of volunteers and the community of Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk who came together to save these whales from this dire situation! And most importantly, we’re so happy that this whale can now swim freely.

All Image Source: Russian Orcas/Facebook