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WATCH: Incredible footage shows the 'best sighting of humpback whales in the last 20 years'

May 5th, 2021 2:21 PM

By Jackie Keogh

Screengrab from the amazing footage captured by Colin Barnes, who operates Cork Whale Watch out of Reen Pier, near Union Hall

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The level of whale activity off the West Cork coast has been described as being ‘off the scale.’

In fact, the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group sightings officer, Padraig Whooley, told The Southern Star, ‘There is probably nowhere else on the planet where you can count whales in dolphin numbers.’

That was Padraig’s enthusiastic response to the countless sightings of Humpback Whales from Baltimore to Beara.

Colin Barnes, who operates Cork Whale Watch out of Reen Pier, near Union Hall, posted a remarkable video online (which can be seen above) claiming it was the best sighting of humpback whales in the last 20 years.

On Thursday, April 29th, he said, ‘We had the most amazing encounter with two humpbacks in a very sociable mood.

‘They approached the boat with great confidence and stayed with us for about 90 minutes, most of the time almost touching the boat, spy hopping and occasionally floating belly up alongside, showing us every part of their anatomy. I somehow doubt we’ll ever again experience such a visit as this one.’

Padraig confirmed it is remarkable to have so much activity, including a recent sighting of between 80 and 100 Minke whales on one trip alone.

He described the activity as ‘exceptional on a global scale.’ And he asked members of the public who are fortunate who have sightings to report them to the Irish Whale and Dolphin group at www.iwdg.ie.

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