Mandy Boyle was in the right place in the right time when she filmed a humpback whale brush up against kayakers and paddle boarders in the waters off of Avila Beach, Calif., earlier this month. The very next day, Boyle returned to the same spot of water to film something even more shocking.
Two #whale watchers had a VERY close encounter while kayaking off the coast of #AvilaBeach that they will likely never forget! 🐳 😱 More on their frightening encounter here: https://t.co/SuwTlm8Hl1 pic.twitter.com/uxUAf2PobT— ABC7 News (@abc7newsbayarea) November 5, 2020
Boyle captured a now-viral video of one whale, nearly swallowing two kayakers whole.
"I saw the big pool of fish, the big bait ball come up out of the water," Julie McSorley, one of those kayakers, told CNN affiliate KMPH. "I saw the whale come up. I thought, 'Oh, no! It's too close."
Neither of the two kayakers were hurt, but instead just tipped over.
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Boyle says those two days were her first time whale-watching. "I couldn't help but feel awe and a sense of peace in their presence," Boyle said. Humpback whales are popular among whale watchers as they are active on the surface and often jump out and slap the water with their pectoral fins or tails, according to the The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
However, marine experts urge any whale watchers to not get too close to touch the whales, and give them their space so as to not disturb the immense creatures. Feeding them could make them sick or dependent on humans for food.
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