What’s it like to play hide and seek with a 60-ton whale? Photographer Justin Hofman and his expedition crew found out while diving just off of Argentina’s Patagonian coast:
The whale pictured here is a Southern right whale, an endangered species native to the Southern Hemisphere. Once numbering in the mere hundreds, the Southern right whale population has rebounded to more than 10,000 in recent years thanks to the hard work of conservationists. Hofman and his expedition crew chanced upon multiple whales as the gentle giants completed their annual winter migration to raise their young in Argentina’s warm coastal waters.
“I’ve gotten a lot of emails and comments about the over/under shot being fake,” Hofman told National Geographic. “This is not a composition of two photos and was only possible with the help of a skillful boat handler who placed the boat in the perfect position.”
Hofman captured this image using a DSLR and an underwater video camera. He must also have employed some of his mad ninja swimming and/or animal whispering skills, since many of the images in this series were captured from within six feet of these shy creatures!
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