Scientists are perplexed by unusual sightings of hundreds of humpback whales together
Humpback whales are, as far as we know, typically loners. Sometimes, they'll gather in groups as large as 20, usually for feeding or migration purposes.
For reasons yet unknown to science, the sea creatures have, as of late, been assembling in packs of up to 200 or so, reports Popular Science.
Stunning humpback whales in the wild
Also strange is where they're doing it -- off the coast of South Africa. The behemoth ocean dwellers typically favor Antarctic waters for feeding, notes New Scientist.
One theory is that the food supply in their new stomping ground is especially lush.
Another hinges on the whales' extraordinary population comeback in recent decades.
Prior to becoming a protected species in 1996, the animals were hunted with zeal, resulting in a 90% loss in their numbers.
Ken Findlay, a researcher from South Africa's Cape Peninsula University of Technology, told New Scientist, "It's possible that the behavior was occurring but just not where it was visible. Because there were so few of them, we may not have seen it."