• Humpback whales, with mouths open, surprise fishermen, bump boat

    By: Shelby Lin Erdman, Cox Media Group National Content Desk

    Updated:
    LONG ISLAND, N.Y. -

    Fishermen off the coast of Long Island got quite a surprise over the weekend when they noticed a pair of humpback whales feeding in the water not too far away.

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    The huge animals may not have seen the men and the boat. The whales appeared to be concentrating so intently on feeding that they had their gigantic mouths wide open as they neared the boat, straining the water as they moved through it to catch any fish in the vicinity.

    Chris Spies recorded the encounter and posted it to social media.

     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     

    Apparently i look like a whale dentist. Show me your bristly greys!

    A post shared by Chris Spies (@chris.spies.7) on

    The whales swam so close to the boat, one of the fishermen sounded a little nervous on the recording as the whales closed in, with one of humpbacks gently brushing against the side of the boat.

    Humpbacks live in oceans around the world and travel major distances every year, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

    They have one of the longest migrations of any mammal on the planet, with some swimming 5,000 miles from their tropical breeding grounds to colder feeding grounds.

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    They consume up to 3,000 pounds of krill and small fish during the summer months and can live up to 90 years, NOAA said.

    Out of the 14 distinct populations of humpbacks, four are still protected as endangered and one is listed as threatened, according to NOAA.

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