“They circled the wagon,” Hartmann said. “We couldn’t leave. They almost had us imprisoned.”
A whale-watching boat captain on something of a boatman’s holiday captured video Wednesday of a whale ballet — a fin whale twirling as it passed beneath his boat.
Larry Hartmann, who runs cruises for Dana Wharf Sportfishing & Whale Watching, was on a yacht with friends on his day off when eight to 10 fin whales began circling the craft Wednesday morning. They were about 14 miles off Dana Point.
But the fin whales showed no hostility. Hartmann guessed they might have been driven by curiousity as they lingered near the boat for two hours.
“It was a little tight,” he said. “The boat isn’t that big. But they were very gentle, very nice.”
Hartmann, who says he sees fin whales perhaps once a week at this time of year on his whale-watching tours, curiosity might have driven one of the whales to twirl as it passed beneath the boat.
“We were thinking it was just trying to get a better look at us,” he said.
Male fin whales can grow to nearly 60 feet in length.
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