Dolphin jumps on young surfer
Footage of a dolphin jumping and landing on surfer Jed Gradisen as he hits the waves in Kalbarri. Video STAB.
Incredible footage has emerged of the moment WA's under-14 state surfing champion Jed Gradisen was struck by a leaping dolphin while surfing a wave off Kalbarri in the state's Mid West.
The footage, shot earlier this month by the 13-year-old's father Andrew, shows Jed paddling over a wave when a dolphin swims up behind him and launches itself into the air.
The arc of the jump sees the marine mammal come directly on top of Jed.
"I saw them coming. I was like 'Oh my god, they're coming straight for me.' So I like tried to get out of the way and he just jumped straight into me," he said.
"The dolphin landed on my, sort of, shoulder and the back half of my body. The dolphin reacted, really I think, really shocked, almost as shocked as I was.
"It's nose went straight through my board, it must have hurt a bit. It was rustling around and really didn't know what to do."
It was a bit of an unlucky day for the grommet - he'd snapped his board earlier in the session and was trying to paddle back to shore when the dolphin jumped onto him.
But there were no serious injuries, and Jed is looking at the encounter as a simple mishap.
"In my dreams I wouldn't dream about of anything like that. Because I think it was an accident. It was just as amazed as I was."
There is much debate about why dolphins jump out if the water, with some scientists saying it's to save energy while travelling or to get a better view, while others say it's just for fun.