Big Blue


“When Patrick Dykstra saw a life-sized replica of a blue whale in the Smithsonian at age 16, he dreamed of having an underwater encounter with the biggest animal on Earth, according to the Daily Mail. The filmmaker, born in Denver and currently based in Dubai, fulfilled his dream in the tropical waters off Sri Lanka where he captured stunning underwater and aerial videos and images of blue whales while swimming with the giant sea creatures, which can reach 98-feet long and weigh 200 tons.

The whales are the largest animal to ever inhabit the earth, and outsize even the biggest dinosaurs. Stunning drone footage captures the enormous mammals from above, while in other shots a kayaker paddles just metres from one of the awe-inspiring creatures.

“Nothing on Earth compares to the experience of being side by side with the largest animal to ever inhabit the planet and to dive into its environment,” Dykstra, 35, told the Daily Mail. “I use my photography and videography to help study these animals in hopes of understanding and protecting them.”


Source: grindtv.com

Let’s just say: Wow!

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Don’t miss all of the 2015 Winners: National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest.

This photo, Whale Whisperers, was taken by Anuar Patjane, who was diving with a humpback whale and her newborn calf at Roca Partida in the Revillagigedo [Islands], Mexico.  Be sure to check out his other whale shots here: Anuar Patjane.


Thank you Eric.

Hump Hump Hump Humpbacks!

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whale

Amateur photographer Katrina Begg took this incredible shot of two whales breaching in tandem off Flynns Beach, off the coast of Port Macquarie in Australia.

Read more here: Herald Sun (July 7, 2015)


Sunday Morning

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Every year, humpback whales come to Kingdom of Tonga during July to September. The mothers raise their babies and when they are enough strong they go far away to the cold water. During whale watching activity, you can live some incredible experiences by interaction with this fabulous mammal. This young calf played with me during 30 minutes under the control of his mother, a great memory. Photo by Marc Henauer.”

Don’t miss the other 9 pictures in The Telegraph: In pictures: The 2015 National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

Monday Morning Wake-Up Call: Up!

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Source: savetheloveliness

I think we shrink from the immensity of the purpose we are here for

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Notes: Image from movie In The Heart of the Sea via splitterherzen.  Post title quote: Norman Mailer.

 

5:00 p.m. Bell: Batta Bing, Batta BOOM

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Source: gifak

Whales sing the same song

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[…] whales sing the same song,
all of them, across the globe
in the chill of the Arctic
and while lazing through the Pacific for a year
and suddenly change their tone,
all of them at once.
The first few hours of that new language
filling the ocean with sonic waves
that ricochet wildly,
finally accidentally intersecting in such a way that is
where have you been I’ve missed you so much.

– Jenna Ogilvie, from “Rosetta Stone


Sources: Photo and Poem via Your Eyes Blaze Out

 

 

The whale’s sonar began to click through my body. Click-click-click.

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Dr. Philip Hoare: wsj.com: Swimming with Sperm Whales in the Atlantic Ocean:

“I’d been fascinated—obsessed, really—with whales since I was a boy…It wasn’t till the year 2000 that I came face-to-face with the real animals, on a whale-watching tour off the coast of Cape Cod. Nothing compares with the sight of a 50-foot, 50-ton humpback breaching a dozen yards off your boat, surrounded by a halo of glistening sea spray…

…The water was calm and the animals were socializing at the surface. There was no time to put on my wet suit; I jammed on my fins, pulled on a mask and snorkel and squeaked over the side of boat—and into the profound…Suddenly, there they were, only a bus-length away: more than a dozen leviathans. My vision was wall-to-wall whales. I could feel my heart beating hard against my rib cage. The largest of the animals detached itself from the pod and began to swim directly at me…

…The whale kept on coming. “OK,” I thought. “It’s either going to ram me with that enormous head—or it’s going to open its mouth at the last moment.”

…But just as I was reconciling myself to the inevitable, I felt—I didn’t hear—the whale’s sonar begin to click through my body. Click-click-click. Through my skull, through my sternum, its exquisitely accurate echo location scanning me like an MRI…The whale came within an arm’s reach. I could have touched it, but I knew that wasn’t part of the contract. It turned on its side and looked me right in the eye. It was a look of sentience, and of comprehension…

…Then the whale dove into its domain, from the blue into the black below. I laughed to myself, out of relief or ecstasy. That night, when I closed my eyes, the whale swam into my head. It’s still there now.

Read Dr. Hoare’s full article: Swimming With Sperm Whales in the Atlantic Ocean. Find his book here: The Sea Inside.


Notes:

Betrayal


Don’t give up on this one.  The underwater footage begins a the 1 minute mark.  The Humpback calf comes on a 1:42.  And you may  wish you stopped watching a wee bit before the finish.  No spoiler.  (But don’t say you weren’t warned)

More on the background of this clip below.


“Hannah Fraser stars in ‘Betrayal,’ a conservation-themed video that features a ‘life-changing’ encounter in the South Pacific.  Fraser acts as a betrayed woman who has fallen into deep despair. She plunges into the dark ocean and is about to give up when she receives a visit by a humpback whale calf. The human and mammal bond as they perform what appears to be a choreographed dance, and the amazing encounter restores the woman’s hope and faith. ‘The woman rediscovers hope and love, dancing with joy as she experiences a profound connection, and comes face to face with this incredible being,” says Heinrichs, an award-winning cinematographer.

Humpback whales, like most other species of whales, were hunted to the brink of extinction during the whaling era. There is mounting pressure by some nations to have them removed from the endangered species list so they can resume hunting.

The footage is unique and remarkable because Fraser was able to get so close to the young humpback, whose mother was nearby, for an extended period. In the video, the mother ultimately arrives and reclaims her calf.

‘The fact that these whales can choose to interact with us so freely, when they can swim away in an instant, and considering our species drove their species to the brink of extinction … to spend time in their company is both humbling and a life-changing experience,’ Fraser says.”


Source: GrindTV