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This is how to have a whale of a time

FLIPPING OUT: A migrating humpback whale breaches off Pippi Beach Yamba on its way from Antartic waters to its summer feeding grounds. PHOTO: Phil Eckersley
FLIPPING OUT: A migrating humpback whale breaches off Pippi Beach Yamba on its way from Antartic waters to its summer feeding grounds. PHOTO: Phil Eckersley

YOU'VE no doubt heard the expression 'whale of time' and the migrating humpbacks were having it as they travelled north past Yamba.

While he missed seeing Migaloo on Sunday, Barry Bourbaud said there were plenty of humpback pods on the horizon with some coming in close enough to put on a good show for his camera.

"Two of them were jumping continuously; we got really excited to see them, Mr Bourbaud said.

"At first we could only see their white bellies and we wondered if one might be Migaloo, but no luck."

Mr Bourbaud is a keen whale watcher and takes his boat offshore on most weekends during whale season, when the weather allows.

Last weekend he was tracking Migaloo, the only known albino humpback.

He plotted Migaloo's course from Port Macquarie after the famous white whale was sighted on Saturday, in the hope of catching a glimpse as he came past Angourie.

"I worked out he would be here between 8am to 2pm - but he must have slowed up because my partner Jo reckons she saw him go past around 4.30pm," he said.

It's not the first time Mr Bourbaud has had a close encounter with a whale.

A few years ago a mother and her calf came right up to the side of his boat.

With the engine off, Mr Bourbaud said he spent some time watching the whales up close and enjoyed eye contact with the calf.

He described the experience as one he will never forget.

Wild About Whales

Did you know there's a free whale watching app for your smartphone?

Join in on the whale journey - get the latest whale sightings, record your own sightings and help other whale watchers spot a whale via Twitter and Facebook.

Learn about different whale species you might see, get tips for spotting them and find tours near you so you can make the most of your coastal adventure.

Search for Whales NSW in your mobile app store.

Wild About Whales is an annual campaign by the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service during whale watching season (June 1 to November 30 each year).

Topics:  migaloo, whale




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