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Saving a Humpback Whale
July 14, 2011 4:01 PM   Subscribe

Saving Valentina. A group of five friends out boating on the Sea of Cortez discovered a young humpback whale entangled in fishing net and possibly near death. After about an hour of hard work they were able to free the whale, who proceeded to put on an amazing show for her rescuers. [Via]
posted by homunculus (43 comments total) 60 users marked this as a favorite

 
Related post.
posted by homunculus at 4:01 PM on July 14, 2011


:-)
posted by tumid dahlia at 4:35 PM on July 14, 2011


!

(I'm just gonna designate that as the opposite of our ".")
posted by oddman at 4:39 PM on July 14, 2011 [5 favorites]


Amazing. Thank you so much.
posted by angiep at 4:39 PM on July 14, 2011


fuckyea whalesavers
posted by New England Cultist at 4:45 PM on July 14, 2011


Doesn't attaching a small boat to a gigantic whale seem dangerous?
posted by empath at 4:50 PM on July 14, 2011


Beautiful. Thanks for posting.
posted by vidur at 4:55 PM on July 14, 2011


Happy Dance!

Thanks for this.
posted by puddinghead at 5:00 PM on July 14, 2011


I don' t think there was anything they could have done that wouldn't have been dangerous. But I'm glad they did it.
posted by Phantomx at 5:02 PM on July 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


!
posted by joannemerriam at 5:17 PM on July 14, 2011


Dangerous makes good TV! Two thumbs up would watch again!
posted by Meatbomb at 5:18 PM on July 14, 2011


Happiness for people and for whales! This was just what I needed to see after reading this article full of idiocy.
posted by cmyk at 5:19 PM on July 14, 2011


Amazing and brave work. They have my respect.
posted by tomswift at 5:20 PM on July 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


The punchline is that 30 years later he chokes to death when the oceans become uninhabitable overheated toxo-sledge.
posted by Meatbomb at 5:21 PM on July 14, 2011


sludge
posted by Meatbomb at 5:21 PM on July 14, 2011


This is beautiful, but WHY THE ORANGE SPEEDO!??!!?
posted by lattiboy at 5:29 PM on July 14, 2011 [3 favorites]


Definitely goose-bump territory. Thanks for the post.
posted by deborah at 5:31 PM on July 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


I like the little kid at the end who says that (s)he knows what the whale is doing. It sounded as if they weren't able to get all the netting off the fluke, I wonder if the breaching & slaps was the whale trying to get rid of the last of it.

And also saying thank-you, of course. THANK YOU HUMANS FOR RIDDING ME OF THE NETS YOU PUT IN HERE IN THE FIRST PLACE. </cynical
posted by Salmonberry at 5:35 PM on July 14, 2011


Fuck Yeah! Where are your Whale Watchers now?
posted by Eideteker at 5:43 PM on July 14, 2011


or whatever that show with the asshats was called
posted by Eideteker at 5:44 PM on July 14, 2011


We went on a whale-watching trip last year, and saw lots of whales - mostly humpbacks. Out by the Farallones - a marine sanctuary - three humpbacks approached our boat (the captain had shut off the engine) and hung out for at least twenty minutes. They swam around the boat, and under it, and spent a lot of time at or near the surface. At one point, when most of the other passengers were on the port side, I was standing in the stern and one of the whales surfaced and looked at me for a couple of minutes. It looked at me as closely and carefully as I was looking at it. It was surreal and moving in ways that I've never been able to articulate, and I burst into tears.
posted by rtha at 5:45 PM on July 14, 2011 [33 favorites]


This was really great to see, thanks. Even a 'young whale' is still huge and awesome, and no doubt dangerous. Just a few weeks ago I came across a dead humpback calf on an island in the Bay of Fundy (a somewhat colder and murkier Sea of Cortez) and comparatively, it was tiny. (but still, Econoline-sized).
posted by Flashman at 5:51 PM on July 14, 2011


I'm going to have to eat a few cans of non-dolphin safe tuna to make up for the fact that that almost brought tears to my eyes.
posted by vorpal bunny at 5:57 PM on July 14, 2011


cmyk: Happiness for people and for whales! This was just what I needed to see after reading this article full of idiocy.

Ugh. I watched the whale video first and was all happy. Then I read this article and now I'm angry.

"We cannot elevate nature above people," explained Edna Mattos, 63, leader of the Citrus County Tea Party Patriots, in an interview. "That's against the Bible and the Bill of Rights."

Mattos said she enjoys showing off the manatees to her grandchildren, but she had little use for the Save the Manatee Club, explaining, "If some of these environmental movements had been around in the days of the dinosaurs, we'd be living in Jurassic Park now."

Just... I don't... what... wow.
posted by Hairy Lobster at 6:07 PM on July 14, 2011 [8 favorites]


Also? This is a good reason why you should always, ALWAYS carry a good knife. Because you never know when you may need to cut netting off a whale.
posted by The otter lady at 6:21 PM on July 14, 2011 [9 favorites]


or whatever that show with the asshats was called

Jersey Shore?
posted by UbuRoivas at 6:30 PM on July 14, 2011 [3 favorites]


Thank you for not making me wait too long.
posted by Eideteker at 6:31 PM on July 14, 2011


Yeah, I was surprised that the only knife they had on board seemed better suited to serving pâté than cutting line. It's just as likely that they would get tangled up, with a fishing net or something around their propeller.
posted by Flashman at 6:33 PM on July 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Much respect to these people.

Xavier Rudd says thanks too
.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 6:52 PM on July 14, 2011


I'm honestly not sure I would have had the testicular fortitude to get that close to an animal that (substantially) outweighs me, my boat and everyone in it but boy am I glad they did.
posted by Skorgu at 7:21 PM on July 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


this was awesome.
posted by punkrockrat at 7:42 PM on July 14, 2011


"But far beneath this wondrous world upon the surface, another and still stranger world met our eyes as we gazed over the side. For, suspended in those watery vaults, floated the forms of the nursing mothers of the whales, and those that by their enormous girth seemed shortly to become mothers. The lake, as I have hinted, was to a considerable depth exceedingly transparent; and as human infants while suckling will calmly and fixedly gaze away from the breast, as if leading two different lives at the time; and while yet drawing mortal nourishment, be still spiritually feasting upon some unearthly reminiscence;—even so did the young of these whales seem looking up towards us, but not at us, as if we were but a bit of Gulfweed in their new-born sight. Floating on their sides, the mothers also seemed quietly eyeing us. One of these little infants, that from certain queer tokens seemed hardly a day old, might have measured some fourteen feet in length, and some six feet in girth. He was a little frisky; though as yet his body seemed scarce yet recovered from that irksome position it had so lately occupied in the maternal reticule; where, tail to head, and all ready for the final spring, the unborn whale lies bent like a Tartar's bow. The delicate side-fins, and the palms of his flukes, still freshly retained the plaited crumpled appearance of a baby's ears newly arrived from foreign parts."

CHAPTER 87. The Grand Armada.

Moby Dick
posted by puny human at 8:36 PM on July 14, 2011 [6 favorites]


The end reminds me a bit of what happens when I am done clipping my dogs nails. She gets all tense, and it so stressful, and then "click," we're done. I let her go, and phew! Running around, going crazy, all that pent up energy!
posted by fyrebelley at 9:25 PM on July 14, 2011


Got a feeling we humans have a pretty terrible reputation down in whale society. It's nice when one of our kind can undo some of that.
posted by contessa at 9:43 PM on July 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


I was fine until that little girl said "I know what she's doing mommy . . .she's showing us she's free." Then I started tearing up. Stupid kids! Always getting right to the heart of the matter and shit!
posted by KingEdRa at 1:03 AM on July 15, 2011 [6 favorites]


Thanks for sharing that; it was awesome.

People who think that whale wasn't filled with joy for being free are kidding themselves.
posted by bwg at 3:01 AM on July 15, 2011


KingEdRa , yep them kids are really good at that. Gets kleenex
posted by dabitch at 4:00 AM on July 15, 2011


Even a 'young whale' is still huge and awesome

Yeah, they describe it as "near death", and then it drags their boat backwards for half a mile.
posted by stebulus at 8:06 AM on July 15, 2011 [4 favorites]


Absolutely incredible!
posted by IvoShandor at 9:39 AM on July 15, 2011


Thank you so much for sharing!
posted by byjingo! at 10:34 AM on July 15, 2011


stebulus: "Even a 'young whale' is still huge and awesome

Yeah, they describe it as "near death", and then it drags their boat backwards for half a mile.
"

I think they meant 'near death' as in: very soon the whale would no longer be able to surface and then drown, unless the nets were removed.
posted by bwg at 5:08 PM on July 15, 2011


Needs more banana hammock.

In all seriousness though, that's awesome.
posted by antifuse at 6:08 PM on July 15, 2011


Mariachi Connecticut Serenades a Beluga Whale
posted by homunculus at 11:26 AM on August 3, 2011 [1 favorite]


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