The Pink River Dolphin is the subject of an interesting legend in the Amazon. It is believed that in the evening, the River Dolphin can transform itself into a man, hypnotizing and seducing unsuspecting, young women.
Rosita was a young indigenous girl of 18, who lived in a house near the banks of the mighty Amazon River. Every day she went to the river to get water to bring back to her family’s home. One evening at dusk, while fetching water, she departed from her usual habit and stood on the river bank watching the river current as of the sunset, seemingly hypnotized by the moving water.
Reassured by the calm current and the secluded bank, she undressed, taking off her dress, and dove into the river for a refreshing swim. The constant stream of the water flowing around her body distracted her and she failed to notice another pair of eyes secretly watching her from the river bank.
Suddenly, she shivered, overcome by the weird feeling that someone was watching her. A young man standing on the muddy bank smiled and stared brazenly at her naked body. She became embarrassed when she saw he was not averting his eyes but looking into her eyes as if they knew each other. Spontaneously, as if controlled by a sinister force, she stood up from the water exposing her naked body, and walked towards him. Her feet moved in small, constant steps, pulling her towards the man whose magnetism she could not resist and whose enchantment forced her to fall into his arms, kissing him.
Rosita whispered to the stranger, “Who are you and where are you from?” The man replied, “I am a fisherman from the river,” all the while maintaining eye contact with her. “I would like to be with you always. What is your answer, my beauty?”
“Yes,” she replied as if hypnotized. They spent the night together, in a passionate embrace, making love the entire night.
From that night forward, they met every evening at sunset, and spent the night together under the shining stars and in the secrecy of the dark night, making love.
Finally, her father confronted her about where she was at night. Although she was a simple and shy girl, she replied bravely to her father, with the force of a woman in love, “I am in love with a fisherman. We are both in love and we are going to get married.”
The father, never seeing his young daughter react in such a way, agreed to meet the fisherman and talk with him. Later that night, the young fisherman came to Rosita’s home and asked her father for permission to marry his daughter. Knowing that his daughter was in love with the mysterious fisherman, her father reluctantly agreed and allowed the young fisherman to sleep with his daughter in their hut.
As time when on, the young fisherman slept with Rosita every night, but mysteriously left every morning before first light and returned only after dusk. However one morning, Rosita’s lover did not leave before sunrise, as he always had previously, and remained sleeping in her bed after sunrise. Rosita awoke that fateful morning, feeling a strange wet body at her side. She opened her eyes and was shocked at what she saw in her bed and screamed loudly.
Her father heard her scream and rushed into the room with his shotgun to help his daughter. Incredibly, there was a pink river dolphin in Rosita’s bed and it was trying to get away, but could not. Far from the water, the pink dolphin fell to the floor, helplessly, unable to escape. Shocked, the father reached for his shotgun and shot the pink dolphin in the head, ending the dolphin’s life.
After that day, the young fisherman never returned and was never seen again. Rosita was heartbroken that her lover had abandoned her. Worse, she soon realized that he had gotten her pregnant and that she would soon bear the mysterious fisherman’s baby.
Tragedy again struck when Rosita died during childbirth. Despite her best efforts, the midwife that attended Rosita could not save her life. However the baby lived, and to the shock of everyone, the baby was not human, but instead a baby dolphin. It seems that, in reality, the mysterious fisherman was not human, but rather a Bufeo Colorado – a pink dolphin who had the ability to transform himself into a human at night and had seduced Rosita.
Native girls are advised! If a mysterious and seductive fisherman appears to you by the river after dusk, do not let yourself be deceived by his appearance. He is the Bufeo Colorado, a magical being who can transform himself into a human at night and only wants to steal the heart and soul of an innocent young girl.
Similarly in the Brazilian Amazon, the pink river dolphin is known as the “Boto Cor-de rosa”, and according to folklore he often joins the “Festa Junina” (June parties) disguised as a human male wearing a hat to hide the hole on top of his head. In this form, he is said to seduce and make love to women, disappearing into the waters when morning comes. This is why in some parts of Brazil people will call a child with no father a “child of the boto”.
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