“The love for all living creatures is the most noble attribute of man.” — Charles Darwin

(OCEANS/WHALE RESCUE) PACIFIC OCEAN — When a humpback whale became entangled in hundreds of yards of nets and fishing line, she was lucky to be spotted by a caring fisherman. Rescuers arrived and spent hours cutting her free. Read below to see how the whale thanked each diver individually!

And from all of us here at Global Animal, we hope you are fortunate enough to be surrounded by people who help you get untangled from anything that binds you. And may you always know the joy of receiving and giving love to animals around the globe. Wishing you all a very Happy Thanksgiving! — Global Animal

A front page story in the San Francisco Chronicle told the story of a female humpback whale who had become entangled in a spider web of crab traps and lines. She was weighted down by hundreds of pounds of traps that caused her to struggle to stay afloat. The whale also had hundreds of yards of line rope wrapped around her body, her tail, her torso, a line tugging in her mouth.

A fisherman spotted the whale just east of the Farallon Islands (beyond the Golden Gate bridge) and radioed an environmental group for help. Within a few hours, the rescue team arrived. They determined that the whale was so bad off that the only way to save her was to dive in and untangle her. The team worked for hours, carefully slashing through the labyrinth of lines with curved knives. Eventually, they freed her.

The divers say that once the female humpback was free to move, she swam in what seemed like joyous circles. The whale then came back to each diver, one at a time, and gave each a nudge, pushing her rescuers gently around as she was thanking them. Some divers said it was the most beautiful experience of their lives.

The diver who cut the rope out of the whale’s mouth said her eyes were following him the whole time. And he will never be the same.


Also, make sure to check out this unforgettable humpback whale rescue captured on video.

Watch as Valentina, a young whale caught in fishing net in the Sea of Cortez, goes from near-death to freedom and rewards her rescuers with dozens of full-body breeches and tail flips.

This video of Michael Fishbach, co-founder of the Great Whale Conservancy, freeing the entangled humpback whale and the joyous whale’s reaction, is perhaps the most extraordinary we’ve ever seen.

Love it. Share it. Let it inspire your own heroism. 




  1. First, that’s a baleen whale, a plankton filter feeder, and is unable to eat a diver. Toothed whales (sperm whales, narwhals, orcas, dolphins, and similar) might have the physical ability to chew a diver but generally do not.

    Second, this is a great demonstration of both interspecies co-operation to untangle the whale, and a fisherman’s proper response to an unusual occurrence while harvesting fish. Getting that garbage out of the ocean and off the whale is hopefully also his attitude towards bycatch – he’ll use the right gage netting and proper supplementary devices so he avoids killing turtles, strangling dolphins, or otherwise causing excessive bycatch kills.

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