When photographer Robyn Malcolm was capturing her recent whale watching trip on the NSW south coast, she never expected to see a pod of humpback whales joined by a surprise guest.
Upon looking through her collection, Robyn noticed a strange sight. It seems an opportunistic fur seal had hitched a ride on one of the whales – hoping to take part in their feeding frenzy.
“We’d seen some amazing whales coming out of the water, everything was happening so quickly. And it was when I went back through the photos that I realised I had actually captured the seal on top of the whale,” Robyn told local media.
But surely such an image can’t be real? NSW National Parks and Wildlife whale expert Geoff Ross said the pairing was not totally unrealistic.
“The only other time was a seal trying to get away from a killer whale… the seal hopped on the back of a humpback whale,” he said, adding that Ms Malcolm’s photos depicted a very typical humpback feeding.”
Robyn insists the image has in no way been altered. Listing her lack of experience with Photoshop as the number one reason why it couldn’t be faked.
“I’m positive, because I don’t know how to use PhotoShop. And I do still have it on the camera so I can prove it.”