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16th Annual Smithsonian Magazine Photo Contest Natural World
Whale Dance

I love Tonga for one main reason. Whales! This year I was fortunate enough to spend a lot of time in the water with these magnificent animals. On this particular occasion we encountered a young whale who seemed fascinated by us in the water. She would swim upside down straight towards me and swoop down through my legs with her pectoral fins stretched out as if to give me a big hug.

Photo Detail
Date Taken: 08.2017
Date Uploaded: 09.2018
Photo Location: Ha'apai islands, Tonga
Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark III
Copyright: © Grant Thomas
Awards
Photo of the Day: 09.05.18
Editor's Pick