The months from April to December are official whale watching seasons in Australia. Whale watchers from around the world tour the country, specifically Sydney, to do some legitimate whale watching during the season. Since the whale watching season has finally arrived, whale watchers from all around the world are ecstatically awaiting the appearance of the famous white humpback whale – Migaloo.
Who is Migaloo?
Migaloo is an all-white humpback whale that is well-known all over the world and celebrated immensely in Sydney, Australia. Migaloo was first sighted in the year 1991 on the 28th of June, passing Australia’s most easterly point – the Byron Bay. The reason why Migaloo was given that name is due to the fact that the name means ‘white fellow’ in the Australian Aboriginal community in Queensland.
Although Migaloo is white all over, it hasn’t been classified as an Albino whale due to lack of evidence, hence Migaloo is currently known to be hypo-pigmented. The all-white humpback male whale now has a large following and a continuously growing popularity.
A Few Facts about Migaloo
As aforementioned, Migaloo is one of Australia’s oldest and whitest humpback whales. Migaloo is one of the most extraordinary whales to exist or to be seen. Here are some interesting facts about the humpback:
- It is estimated that Migaloo was born in 1986, making it almost 31 years old.
- Migaloo is an all white male humpback and was first spotted making its annual migration 1991.
- Migaloo is recognised mainly by the scars that it still bears on its back, which was the result of being struck by a trimaran.
- When first sighted, Migaloo was the only documented all-white humpback whale in not just Australia, but the entire world.
- Because of the fact that Migaloo is such a rare humpback whale, there are special laws, namely the Queensland & Commonwealth Government legislation, to protect it from being harassed. A breach of the law will cause a penalty fee of $16,500.0 Australian Dollars.
- No jet ski is permitted to be closer than 500m to Migaloo and no aircraft should be 2000ft.
- It is believed that Migaloo may also have fathered two albino calves, but there isn’t enough evidence to back this claim as yet.
Migration Patterns of Humpback Whales
All whales currently dwelling in the Australian waters migrate to feed themselves and their young, as well as to breed. During the season of summer, humpback whales in the southern hemisphere take to Antarctica in order to feed themselves and their calves. The annual migratory route begins in late autumn, during which they travel to the warmer tropical waters of the Pacific Ocean, returning to the south in spring. To celebrate this migration, special whale migration tours are organised for tourists, every year.
Get a Chance to See Migaloo
This migration season has a lot of whale watching communities giving out packages for various whale migration tours. While there are hundreds of people currently signed up to witness Migaloo’s appearance, you too can be one of them to witness it this year.