Rare footage of Bryde’s whales feeding

Captured via drone off the coast of Auckland. There are thought to be fewer than 200 of these creatures left in New Zealand waters.

Scientists at the Auckland University of Technology released this rare footage of a Bryde’s whale ((pronounced broo-dess) feeding off the coast of Auckland, New Zealand on June 6, 2016. Bryde’s whales usually feed alone, though mothers and calves often feed together, and that’s what they scientists captured here. They wrote on their YouTube page:

The footage shows an adult whale feeding, briefly joined by a young calf, and was filmed from a drone off the coast of Auckland. It is thought to be the first time the feeding behaviour of a Bryde’s Whale has been recorded by an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV).

The footage was captured by AUT post-graduate students, Ticiana Fetterman and Lorenzo Fiori, while on the water conducting their respective Masters and PhD research.

They were stunned to glimpse the whales, and to share the rarely seen moment with their research supervisor Dr Barbara Bollard Breen.

Thanks for the heads up about this video, Shireen Gonzaga!

Read more about Bryde's whales from WDC (Whale and Dolphin Conservation).

Read more about Bryde’s whales from WDC (Whale and Dolphin Conservation).

Bottom line: Rare footage, captured via drone, of Bryde’s whales feeding.

Deborah Byrd