Back from The Brink

In 1970 Humpback Whales were listed as an endangered species. There were estimated to be only 750 whales left in existence. Commercial whaling of this species was stopped internationally although certain countries still hunt other whale species in violation of international law.

Today, the worldwide Humpback Whale population is estimated at 84,000 and increasing. Regional estimates are 18,000–20,000 in the North Pacific,12,000 in the North Atlantic and over 50,000 in the Southern Hemisphere. The population is no longer considered endangered but still protected by NOAA. Because of this protection it is hard to photograph these animals. Boats are not allowed to get closer than 100 yards. If whales approach the boat they are required to shut off their engines and stay in “whale jail” until the whales back off.

We were fortunate to see a lot of whales and managed to get a few images including a mother and baby.

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