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Up Close and Personal With a Humpback Whale

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.

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Wow. I’m not sure what impressed me more – the humpback vocalizations or the fact that this ‘Crazy Cameraman’ must have nerves of steel. This video was captured in South Africa by Graeme Duane of Earth Touch productions, and it’s well worth a watch. Having just returned from Maui, where I saw many humpbacks displaying, I am reminded that I was watching from a great distance. I cannot imagine the adrenaline rush that would come along with being this close to one in the water. Kudos Graeme!

Carin Bondar About the Author: Carin Bondar is a biologist, writer and film-maker with a PhD in population ecology from the University of British Columbia. Find Dr. Bondar online at, on twitter @drbondar or on her facebook page: Dr. Carin Bondar – Biologist With a Twist. Follow on Twitter @drbondar.

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.

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  1. 1. SoundingTheSea 5:22 pm 02/11/2014

    But remember, kids, it’s illegal to approach a humpback whale to within more than 100 yards in many countries (including the US). It’s illegal if you’re swimming, kayaking, or on a boat. So don’t do this, for the safety of the whales and yourself. (Scientists get special federal permits to get closer).

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  2. 2. wvmelissadawn 5:53 pm 02/11/2014

    To me, this is a fascinating video. I have been interested in whales since I was a young child. I can’t even imagine being that close to one. What a great experience! This video really shows how peaceful and captivating these gigantic creatures really are. Great video!

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