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Close encounter

By David Gordon

Close encounter with ocean heavyweights

Byron Bay photographer John D’Errey spends 40 minutes up close and personal with two humpbacks
Whale watchers have been experiencing a feast for the eyes as the massive mammals make their way through north coast waters on their annual southern migration.

Byron Bay photographer John D’Errey has been capturing humpback whales on film for many years but had his closest encounter with the creatures just last week.

He says two humpbacks, each measuring more than 10m in length, frolicked next to his boat off Cape Byron for 40 minutes.

“They were coming up to the boat and putting their pectoral fins up in a reaching out sort of way,” he says.
“It was like ballet, rolling around, gently moving around and playing with us.

“This was really lovely because of the length of time they stayed with us.

“It was constant circling of the boat, constant going under the boat… it was pretty scary but also a big adrenalin rush as well and just lovely to watch these whales kind of almost try to reach out and touch you at times.”

Note: Featured photograph was taken by Ron Atcock/ John D’errey’s images can be seen by clicking here

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