The excitement levels of BBC One’s Steve Backshall in the video above are exactly where all of ours should be. This footage of the largest animal to ever grace the Earth is certainly a rarity. Blue whales (Balaenoptera musculus) were nearly hunted to extinction by our stupid species until 1966 when we wised up a bit and began implementing protective measures against such practices.
As Backshall giddily exclaims in the video, this rare sight is such a treat due in part to the conservation efforts at Monterey Bay. The BBC One special “Big Blue Live” had all but given up on getting footage of a blue whale, as they were told none were in the bay all week, so Backshall was actually in the midst of reporting on other species present like this footage of humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) and California sea lions (Zalophus californianus):
The amount of wildlife in one ecosystem like Monterey Bay is a testament to what conservation efforts can accomplish. As Backshall puts it, “If we protect places they will come back and they will come back in dramatic style.” This is proof positive that as we take better care of the world — or at least do less to ruin it than our predecessors did — the environment can bounce back surprisingly quick. The opportunity to see a Blue Whale in the wild pulls at my heartstrings in just the right way as I grew up with some version of a whale poster on my bedroom walls.
The conservation efforts like that of Monterey Bay give us all hope that blue whales continue to make a comeback and their numbers grow to where they once were. Seeing the impressive sight of a big ol’ blue whale warms our hearts and gives us real hope for the future. In fact, it puts us in such a great mood that we just need to dance. Take it away Juno!
How awesome is the Blue Whale footage? Did you have a whale poster growing up? Of course you did! Let us know how awesome it was in the comments below!
Featured Image: “Anim1754 – Flickr – NOAA Photo Library” by NOAA Photo Library – anim1754. Licensed under Public Domain via Commons