Migaloo the rare white humpback whale spotted

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One of the world's rarest sea creatures, Migaloo the white humpback whale (his name is an Aboriginal word for "white fella") was spotted off the eastern coast of Australia on June 19. According to the Pacific Whale Foundation, Migaloo is the "only documented white humpback whale in the world."

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Migaloo the rare white humpback whale spotted
BYRON BAY, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 28: An Australian white humpback whale named Migaloo is seen off the coast of Byron Bay, Australia's most easterly point, on September 28, 2009 in Byron Bay, Australia. Migaloo is the only documented white humpback whale in the world and has been named as such meaning 'White Fella' in the Aborginal Australian language. The whale was first spotted in 1991. (Photo by Rob Dalton/Getty Images)
BYRON BAY, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 28: An Australian white humpback whale named Migaloo is seen off the coast of Byron Bay, Australia's most easterly point, on September 28, 2009 in Byron Bay, Australia. Migaloo is the only documented white humpback whale in the world and has been named as such meaning 'White Fella' in the Aborginal Australian language. The whale was first spotted in 1991. (Photo by Rob Dalton/Getty Images)
BYRON BAY, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 28: An Australian white humpback whale named Migaloo is seen off the coast of Byron Bay, Australia's most easterly point, on September 28, 2009 in Byron Bay, Australia. Migaloo is the only documented white humpback whale in the world and has been named as such meaning 'White Fella' in the Aborginal Australian language. The whale was first spotted in 1991. (Photo by Rob Dalton/Getty Images)
BYRON BAY, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 28: An Australian white humpback whale named Migaloo is seen off the coast of Byron Bay, Australia's most easterly point, on September 28, 2009 in Byron Bay, Australia. Migaloo is the only documented white humpback whale in the world and has been named as such meaning 'White Fella' in the Aborginal Australian language. The whale was first spotted in 1991. (Photo by Rob Dalton/Getty Images)
BYRON BAY, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 28: An Australian white humpback whale named Migaloo is seen off the coast of Byron Bay, Australia's most easterly point, on September 28, 2009 in Byron Bay, Australia. Migaloo is the only documented white humpback whale in the world and has been named as such meaning 'White Fella' in the Aborginal Australian language. The whale was first spotted in 1991. (Photo by Rob Dalton/Getty Images)
BYRON BAY, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 28: An Australian white humpback whale named Migaloo is seen off the coast of Byron Bay, Australia's most easterly point, on September 28, 2009 in Byron Bay, Australia. Migaloo is the only documented white humpback whale in the world and has been named as such meaning 'White Fella' in the Aborginal Australian language. The whale was first spotted in 1991. (Photo by Rob Dalton/Getty Images)
BYRON BAY, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 28: An Australian white humpback whale named Migaloo is seen off the coast of Byron Bay, Australia's most easterly point, on September 28, 2009 in Byron Bay, Australia. Migaloo is the only documented white humpback whale in the world and has been named as such meaning 'White Fella' in the Aborginal Australian language. The whale was first spotted in 1991. (Photo by Rob Dalton/Getty Images)
In this photo provided by the Southern Cross University Whale Research Centre shows the dorsal of a white whale that has been affectionately named Migaloo, an Aboriginal word meaning white fellow, as it migrates along Australia's east coast off Byron Bay, 500 kilometers (300 miles) north of Sydney, Australia, Monday, June 26, 2006. Migaloo is among a pod of 35 humpback whales making the journey. (AP Photo/Southern Cross University Whale Research Centre, Dan Burns) ** EDITORIAL USE ONLY **
In this photo provided by the Southern Cross University Whale Research Centre, water mist is shot into the air from the blow hole of a white whale that has been affectionately named Migaloo, an Aboriginal word meaning white fellow, as it migrates along Australia's east coast off Byron Bay, 500 kilometers (300 miles) north of Sydney, Australia, Monday, June 26, 2006. Migaloo is among a pod of 35 humpback whales making the journey. (AP Photo/Southern Cross University Whale Research Centre, Dan Burns) ** EDITORIAL USE ONLY **
In this photo provided by the Southern Cross University Whale Research Centre shows the tail fluke of a white whale that has been affectionately named Migaloo, an Aboriginal word meaning white fellow, as it migrates along Australia's east coast off Byron Bay, 500 kilometers (300 miles) north of Sydney, Australia, Monday, June 26, 2006. Migaloo is among a pod of 35 humpback whales making the journey. (AP Photo/Southern Cross University Whale Research Centre, Dan Burns) ** EDITORIAL USE ONLY **
** FILE ** In this June 26, 2006 file photo provided by the Southern Cross University Whale Research Centre, the tail fluke of a white whale that has been affectionately named Migaloo, an Aboriginal word meaning white fellow, as it migrates along Australia's east coast off Byron Bay, 500 kilometers (300 miles) north of Sydney, Australia. Migaloo is among a pod of 35 humpback whales making the journey. Australia is spending millions of dollars on non-lethal whale research in 2008 in a bid to punch a hole in Japan's contention that they must kill the animals in order to study them. (AP Photo/Southern Cross University Whale Research Centre, Dan Burns, File) ** EDITORIAL USE ONLY **
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Whale Watching Sydney, a tourism company, said "We got extremely lucky and had Migaloo come up just 5m next to our boat – what a sight that was! An incredible day our passengers wont forget."

Since Migaloo is migrating up the coast of Australia toward warmer waters, it's possible to estimate where he might end up. Hoping to get a quick peek at the amazing creature, Whale Watching Sydney "...had people up on the cliffs from 6:30 am to make sure we would not miss out."

Finally, at around 3 PM, Migaloo was spotted, and the footage above was shot. "He was travelling in a competition pod of 5 adults with an average speed of about 7kts and a great deal of zigging and zagging. There is an exclusion zone of 500m around him which we stuck to but with the nature of a competition pod its sometimes hard to predict where they will come up next," Whale Watching Sydney notes.

The Guardian explains that the white humpback whale was first spotted in 1991. It's possible to get a rough estimate of where he'll pop up, but there have been years when he seemed to vanish.

The White Whale Research Center explains that there's another really exciting reason to try and catch a glimpse of Migaloo: he may not be alone. The site explains, "Up until September 2011 Migaloo was thought to be the only all white Humpback Whale in the world. Then amazing footage emerged of a 100% all white baby humpback calf. This new white whale unofficially named MJ (Migaloo Junior) has amazed & delighted people from around the world."

If you want to be 'friends' with Migaloo, check out his Facebook page. Here's to many more majestic migrations!

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