Being that it was the middle of July, it was an unusually calm day on the Indian Ocean when a film crew caught an amazing sight on camera. After several fruitless hours, the crew witnessed a humpback whale in full breach. That’s when a whale jumps completely out of the water.
And the breach the crew caught on film is nothing short of astonishing.
The crew, which included four scuba divers, was off the shore of Mbotyi in Pondoland, Eastern Cape province, South Africa, in a small inflatable boat.
Their intention was to catch marine wildlife in action during the South African Sardine Run. The Run, world-famous, is where pilchard fish, or sardines, pile up in a mass migration along the east coast of Africa. Dolphins, birds and sharks then swoop into the long line of sardines to snack on them. And the sight can be wondrous.
But the crew was not expecting the humpback whale. The mother cow, who was swimming nearby with a calf, decided to pay them a visit. She first slaps her fins on the water then fully breaches, leaping into the air.
And as to why whales breach, they allegedly do it to gain attention!
“Leaping up in the air and splashing down is equivalent to the really keen kid in a classroom jumping up and down waving his arms,” said one marine biologist.
When the whale body slaps against the water, other marine life perk up and pay attention. And while a whale in full breach is an extremely rare sight, the cameraman was lucky enough to not only see it, but catch it on film!
According to the crew, a whale in full breach has never before been caught on video. So you know it’s a rare treat to be able to view the footage below!
Watch the impressive footage of the humpback whale in a full breach: