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Pod of ten whales seen off shore

  • A humpback about two miles off shore (Photograph by Conor Outerbridge)
  • The pod of humpbacks about two miles off shore (Photograph by Conor Outerbridge)

Two film-makers spotted a massive pod of whales off the coast of Bermuda.

Conor Outerbridge and Adam Johnson were out on the water to film humpback whales for their company when they came across the ten-strong group two miles off South West Breaker.

Mr Outerbridge told The Royal Gazette: “This is the first time I’ve seen ten whales at once. They do travel in a pod of ten, but I’ve just never seen it.

“In Bermuda, you always see a pod of two or three or like four if you’re lucky. Normally they’re spread out; normally you don’t see pods of ten whales.”

Mr Outerbridge, a professional photographer and videographer, has filmed whales five times.

The two were shooting video for their company, Marooned Clothing, a range with an environmental twist which also aims “to promote the protection of the ocean and cleaning up trash around Bermuda”.

Co-founder Mr Johnson said: “The whole concept is starting something in Bermuda, mainly promoting ocean awareness and to get the younger generation interested in protecting the ocean.”

However, Andrew Stevenson, who has been studying whales in Bermuda for 12 years, said a pod of ten humpback whales in these waters was not unusual.

Mr Stevenson, principal investigator for the Humpback Whale Project, which is backed by the Bermuda Zoological Society, said: “I see groups of 16, 14, seven, eight, nine.”

“Yesterday was the biggest, there must have 25 whales and they’re closely packed together.”

He explained that whales in these groupings are “usually a female with a bunch of males competing for her attention” which are known as “rowdy groups”.

He added: “Sometimes it’s pretty relaxed, and sometimes, like yesterday, it’s very heated.It’s a lot of shoving and pushing and barging and hitting.

“It’s a competitive group, they’re trying to vie for the attention of the female but I’m not really sure why they’re doing it at this time of the year because it’s too late for the female to breed.”