London, May 5 : You must have heard about humans and animals being fitted with artificial limbs, but have you ever imagined a dolphin getting an artificial tail? Well, Winter, the dolphin is the world's first bionic sea creature fitted with a fake tail.
Winter, the Atlantic bottlenose dolphin, had lost her original tail when it got caught in a crab trap, when she was just two months old.
Thus, Winter could not swim properly and faced death before it was rescued by the Clearwater Marine Aquarium in Florida.
She got her saviour in Kevin Carroll, one of the world's leading artificial limb-makers, who created her a new 2.5ft tail from silicone and plastic.
"I felt really sorry for Winter, but it took me a year and a half to make the tail," The Sun quoted him, as saying.
Kevin has even made limbs for dogs and an ostrich, but doing it for a dolphin was a different experience to him altogether.
"When we fit a socket on a person we just have one long, solid bone. But for Winter we had to make the socket move in every direction," he said.
And now, thanks to her artificial tail, Winter can easily swim and splash about in normal dolphin style.
"We didn't think she'd live when we rescued her. She needed 24-hour around-the-clock care by our veterinary staff," said Aquarium director David Yates.
He added: "Then instead of being able to swish up and down like a normal dolphin, she could only waggle from side to side. But her spirit was very positive. She had a never-say-die attitude."