Monday, July 18, 2011

Flipping amazing... the moment a humpback whale 'thanks' rescuers who saved it from dying tangled in fishing nets


Helping hand: Michael Fishbach and his two friends help to cut the net from the helpless humpback whale

A humpback whale, which was freed from almost certain death by three men off the coast of California, repaid the favour to its rescuers with a breathtaking display of breaches and dives.

The amazing hour-long performance by the creature was caught on camera moments after it was cut free from fishing nets.

The whale had a lucky escape after the boat came across the helpless creature which had its tail and flippers entirely trapped.

Danger: The huge creature could have easily overturned the boat but the rescuers were determined to cut the nets away

The boat of whale watchers first thought the humpback was already dead as it was floating on top of the water.

But then it let out a loud breath through its blow hole.

Michael Fishbach decided the best thing to do was to get into the water and snorkel alongside the stricken whale.

He said: 'As I swam alongside the animal our eyes met.

'There were no we could share but I wanted to let the whale know that we were there to help.

'It took some effort to stay focused given the great emotion of the moment.

'The sight of this large and beautiful creature trapped and so close to death was almost overwhelming.

Spectacular: The huge whale shows its splendour as it jumps out of the water

'I must admit I was a bit scared because I knew the whale was frightened and fatigued but could still kill me with one panicked movement.'

He said the whale's tail was so entangled that it was weighed down by about 15ft.

Michael got back on the boat and tried to cut the net off the whale with a small knife.

Thank you: The whale performed around 40 breaches and tail slaps in the hour after being freed

The whole rescue was captured on camera off the coast of California


Twitter Delicious Facebook Digg Stumbleupon Favorites More

Design by Free WordPress Themes | Bloggerized by Lasantha - Premium Blogger Themes | Grants For Single Moms