A humpback whale has won the heart of a diver. After she protected her from a fearsome shark. These whales are known not only as the largest creatures in the oceans, but also stand out for having a high degree of intelligence and empathy towards other species. The whale protected a female diver from a shark attack .
Although there have been records of their protective behavior towards other endangered animals, these animals had never been documented protecting a human. It all happened in the Cook Islands, in the South Pacific, when marine biologist Nan Hauser, who has been diving with whales for more than 30 years, had an impressive encounter with a 50,000-pound humpback whale . Hauser was with a crew who wanted to film her interacting with humpback whales in the waters off Muri Beach, Rarotonga.
Suddenly one of the whales swam towards her and began to push her out of the water with its mouth and chin . The whale’s action was quite persistent, so Hauser couldn’t help but worry. ” She just wouldn’t stop touching me. I tried to pull away over and over again, but she kept on doing it. She finally pushed me out of the water with her fin. She kept putting her eye on her right next to me and I couldn’t understand what she was trying to tell me ,” Nan said.
For almost 10 minutes, the interaction between the whale and the woman was very tense. In this situation, negative thoughts invaded Nan, who even believed that her end had come. « I thought the camera crew was going to end up filming my death. One lash from a whale’s tail, and the pressure would break her bones ,” she said about it. Incredibly, the whale’s actions were far from resembling an attack, before long Nan discovered that she actually wanted to protect her from a shark that was lurking near her.
The whale was doing its best to keep it safe under its pectoral fin. Studies reveal that humpback whales have sophisticated reasoning, decision making, problem solving, and communication. At the scene was another humpback whale who from a distance seemed to be watching all around him, repeatedly beating his tail against the water to scare off the shark .
« I finally took my eye off the whale and saw something swimming very fast with its tail swinging from side to side. Whales swim with their tails bobbing up and down. That’s when I realized it was a tiger shark, and it was one of the biggest sharks I’ve ever seen in my life ,” he said. Luckily, after a few tense minutes, the whale managed to shield the woman and bring her back to the surface . « I just put my hands on my face and started crying. I can’t tell if they were tears of relief because she was alive. Or because she had just experienced the most incredible thing I’ve ever seen in my life ,” the woman said.
Marine biologist Robert Pitman analyzed this behavior for more than 6 decades and concluded that humpback whales band together to disrupt killer whale attacks . Developing a rescue behavior capable of charging when they perceive that a calf is in danger. The woman presented some bruises in the encounter with the whale, but that did not limit her from continuing to share with these majestic animals. « Right now, the oceans and the whales are in a lot of trouble. The ocean is the earth’s amniotic sac, and what is happening to the creatures in the ocean will soon happen to us if we are not more careful. We need to be a voice for them ,” Nan said.
Below you can see the video where the woman is seen interacting with the whale:
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