A teenager has seen a rare white whale off the coast of northern New South Wales, Australia.
The appearance of Migaloo’s calf raises the prospect that she has given birth, which is consistent with numerous other whale sightings.
On Thursday, a white humpback whale was seen swimming 500 meters offshore of Fingal Head in Coolangatta, AU.
Around this time of year, the world-famous whale Migaloo, who is named after an indigenous word for “white fella,” migrates north along the east coast of Australia.
The researchers are expecting the calf to be a member of the renowned humpback whale, which has yet to be seen this season.
According to marine scientist Dr. Wally Franklin, it may be a “extremely rare” second white albino whale in the eastern Australian whale family.
“This is the first time I’ve been able to claim that the white whale I’m looking at could be a white whale other than Migaloo.”
“The timing of the sighting is consistent with it being a younger whale, since it’s still early in the season,” says Dr Franklin, who also recognizes the beloved whale by the knobs on his dorsal fin.
If it’s a separate whale, Migaloo is expected to appear between June and July.
“He’s been very consistent with those initial sightings so that could be a good indication that this might be a second white whale, which in itself would be quite incredible.”
The white thing was filmed playing with a pod of dolphins by Brayden, who works for Surf Life Saving NSW and uses drones to conduct shark monitoring.
“I was out for a paddle and a surf with my friend on the back… and I heard this strange singing or howling noise,” Blake said.
When he returned home, he was astonished by the humpback’s hue, so he grabbed his drone and captured the video.
“I’ve seen ordinary humpback whales before, but this one didn’t seem to be the sames, it was all white every time it came back for a breath of air,” he added.
The humpback whale population migrates from Antarctica to the milder seas off Australia’s north-eastern coast every year between May and November.
After mating and giving birth, they return south with their young.
Migaloo is one of the numerous 40,000 whales in the world, yet because of his unusual coloring, he is considered quite distinctive.
In 1991, Migaloo was observed for the first time in Hervey Bay, and researchers have been monitoring the species ever since.
Researchers were intrigued by Migaloo’s hue because he was believed to be the first completely white whale in the eastern humpback whale population.