Photographer 'Speechless' Following First Ever Verified Blue Whale Sighting Off Australian Coast
The photographer - who goes under the Instagram handle @seansperception - was watching humpback whales in Maroubra, Sydney, last month when the largest animal on the planet caught him by surprise.
Sharing a picture of the enigmatic animal on Instagram, he said: "I'm speechless but could blurt out a million things at the same time.
"THE LARGEST LIVING ANIMAL ON PLANET EARTH. To put their size into perspective; they grow to around 30 metres, their tongue weights the same as an elephant & their heart is the size of a car!
"Completely mesmerised & feel like I've hit the Jackpot."
But despite being so massive, the creatures are seldom sighted - especially off the east coast of Australia.
Project officer at the New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS), Andrew Marshall, said the sighting was 'extremely rare'; so rare in fact that it is the first ever verified sighting in the state.
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Well where do I start; :whale2: I'm speechless but could blurt out a million things at the same time :astonished: Yesterday watching a lot of humpbacks travel south in my usual spot at Maroubra, one of the great wonders of the magical ocean appeared in-front of me :eyes: A BLUE WHALE :whale2: :whale2::whale2: THE LARGEST LIVING ANIMAL ON PLANET EARTH :earth_africa: Although so large they are incredibly hard to ever see especially on the east coast on Australia To put their size into perspective; they grow to around 30metres, their tongue weights the same as an elephant & their heart is the size of a car! Completely mesmerised & feel like I've hit the Jackpot:ok_hand: Hope you enjoy as much as I still am:heart::whale2::earth_africa:
Speaking to 9News, he said: "The blue whale is the largest animal on the planet yet despite its size it could have easily slipped by Sydney's coast unnoticed.
"Blue whales are largely 'invisible' even to the most avid whale watchers and researchers as the creature is very rarely seen around the world.
"They are not often seen because they tend to live very far out to sea, their populations are widely dispersed and we have very limited data on its migration and critical habitat.
"We have unofficial records of blue whales near Sydney from observers at Cape Solander in 2002 and 2013 but this recent sighting is the first verified record of this species off our coast."
He continued: "Opportunistic sightings like this one are so incredibly valuable.
"They improve our understanding of where these species live and suggest if there are measures we need to consider to try to protect them."
Featured Image Credit: Instagram/seansperception