This is an album of photos taken during June and August, 2008 as the humpback whales made their annual
migration from the Antarctic along the east coast of Australia to the warmer waters of Queensland.
In the 1950's about 10,000 humpbacks made the migration each year. A dramatic increase
in commercial whaling reduced their numbers to around 400 by 1963, when humpback whaling was banned in the
Southern Hemisphere. As a result of the ban,
there are now estimated to be more than 8,000 whales each year making the migration - a wonderful turnaround,
but still only around 40% of the number estimated to have been making the migration in the pre-whaling days.
But the Japanese government remains determined to resume their hunting of these magnificent animals, so
their continued existence remains in doubt.
The first photos were taken off Port Macquarie, NSW, while the rest were taken in Hervey Bay, Quensland.