Whale of a time: Mother lifts up her calf to give tourists in Mexico a wave


Making a splash: A grey whale lifts up her calf to greet the excited tourists

Whale-watchers in Mexico were treated to an extraordinary close encounter with the mammals, as a 50-foot mother lifted up her baby calf to look at them in their boat.
As the majestic creature crested the wave in Laguna San Ignacio, a conservation area filled with the mammals, she gave her calf a boost so it could see what was going on.
U.S. tourists Greg and Barbara MacGillivray recorded incredible, anthropomorphic moment for posterity - showing just how friendly grey whales can be.
'It seemed like the mother wanted us to see her calf, actively pushing the calf close to our boat,' said Mrs MacGillivray.
Such interaction at the spot is not uncommon, according to One World, One Ocean, but is carefully regulated to protect the species.

Ocean adventure: The delighted whale-watchers gently pat the sea creature as it swims astonishingly close

The lagoon is part of the El Vizcaino Biosphere Reserve, and is the grey whale’s last undisturbed nursing and breeding ground.
Each winter, hundreds of grey whales (Eschrichtius robustus) migrate about 6,000 miles (10,000 km) from their Alaskan feeding grounds to the warm, shallow water of San Ignacio to give birth between January and April.
'There is a constant "oofft" of the exhalation from the blow holes of all the whales surfacing for air. Such a gentle reassurance that nature is alive and well in the lagoon: probably the softest, most gentle and nurturing sound in the world,' said Mrs MacGillivray.

Swim star: The mammals frequently interact with fishing boats in the carefully controlled conservation area

Fortunately, the years of work activists have put into protecting the whales have helped to reduce entanglements like this. The MacGillivrays' guide, Jim, said he had seen such occurrences only three times in over a dozen seasons here.
Mr Dedina added: 'It’s important to remember that all the whale watching outfitters are local fishermen and that by having them involved in local whale watching, it’s taking pressure off of the fisheries inside and outside the Lagoon, which is beneficial to grey whales and other wildlife and fish species.'

source :dailymail