Lobster boat captain helps save best mate of 15 years: a seagull

Red Eye, as she was known, joined Captain John on nearly every boat trip for 15 years when one day, she came to him injured.


Dog may be a man’s best friend, but this lobster boat captain found a unique first mate in a seagull. Red Eye, as she was known because of the distinct red markings on her eye, regularly joined Captain John Makowsky for 15 years on his lobster boat, The Intrepid.

"It was comforting to look forward to see her there all the time. I mean, without a doubt, she's been with me longer than any deckhand," Makowsky said.

The pair formed a bond and enjoyed years of seafaring together. Until one day, he noticed she was injured.

"As she flew in, her leg was dangling below her body and I could see her coming in, and she landed, it was like, after 15 years it was like ugh, this is awful," Makowsky described.

Red Eye injured her leg so badly — to the point of nerve damage — that if she had been left on her own, she would have starved.

Makowsky was able to safely catch her and bring her to the Center for Wildlife in Maine. Makowsky had to sail without her while she was being nursed back to health.

"Every day I'd go out the next week, and there was an empty cabin in front of me. There was nobody on the long ride," he said.

Upon hearing their story, the team at the wildlife center went the extra mile for Red Eye, and the bird made a remarkable recovery. Her return back to the ship was a day Makowsky won't forget.

"It was just a fabulous day. It was so great."

Makowsky has already written a book about his relationship with Red Eye. He's looking for a publisher and an illustrator so her story can go global.

Watch their incredible story in the video player above.