Watch a Florida Fisherman Encounter a Rare Whale Off the Coast of Naples in This Unbelievable Video
There are only 450 of the whale species left in the world.
If you live in Florida for an extended period of time, you can expect to stumble upon a variety of weird creatures: manatees, gators, egrets, lizards the size of Godzilla (for real!).
What’s a little more uncommon? Whale sightings. And even rarer than that—wherever you happen to live—is a sighting of the North Atlantic Right Whale.
So imagine the surprise when a group of fishermen stumbled upon the whale in the shallow waters off the coast of Naples, Florida—and later found out what a privilege the sighting was.
According to the NOAA, the North Atlantic Right Whale is a critically endangered species, with just about 450 of them left in the world. Unlike most large-breed whales, they tend to stick in shallower waters close to the coast, putting them at greater risk for vessel strikes and entanglement in crab and lobster fishing nets. While they do breed in the warmer waters surrounding Florida and Georgia, North Atlantic right whales are typically found between Cape Cod and Nova Scotia.
This particular whale, a juvenile male, was being tracked by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and is expected to make his way out to the Atlantic. (Yay!)
Related: Scientists Have Finally Discovered the Reasons Why Whales Jump: