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Seeing a pod of normal humpback whales is treat enough for most of us - So, you can only imagine how excited Australian resident Wayne Fewings and his family must have been, when they saw this pure white humpback calf!
The rare sighting took place on Thursday, September 29th, when the family encountered a pod of migrating whales, whilst drifting around in their boat near Cid Harbor, off the coast of North Queensland.
Noticing some activity around the boat, they stopped and out came this stunning 12-feet long calf that Mr. Fewings estimates was only a few weeks old. The best part was that the curious whale came close enough to the boat, allowing him to take these amazing pictures before it was summoned away by two not so happy adult gray whales.
Pure white whales, caused when the marine mammals are born without melanin, are extremely rare - In fact, the only documented one known to exist amongst the 15,000+ that reside along Australia's east coast is Migaloo. First sighted in 1991, Migaloo, which means 'White Fella', is one of Australia's most celebrated humpback whales, with two dedicated websites, a Facebook page and even, a record album that features him singing!
Experts believe that while this calf could be Migaloo's offspring, it could also belong to a normal gray humpback carrying a recessive white gene - Something they will not be able to confirm, unless they can obtain samples and perform genetic tests. Hopefully, the little calf will return and become as frequent a visitor as Migaloo has been, over the years.
Resources: Telegraph.co.uk, news24.com