The ROV Hercules had a rare visit from a sperm whale around 598m deep in the ocean waters when a team of scientists was doing a live broadcast. Sperm whales are very rarely sighted in the Louisiana waters due to which everyone was surprised with this encounter. The Nautilus Live expedition crew captured the moment and posted on their Facebook Page.
The 10m sperm whale made a visit when the crew was exploring the seafloor of the Gulf of Mexico for methane seeps using the remotely operated vehicle-Hercules. At first, the scientists were surprised to see a strange object moving towards the ROV but were delighted once they identified it to be a sperm whale. The behemoth creature, even stopped enough to peek through the camera.
Loudest and the Longest Mammal
It was an amazing moment for the crew, according to Susan Poulton, the expedition spokeswoman. The sperm whale came so close to the ROV that the crew could see its head with scratches. The visit stunned the sailors and scientists who could not take their eyes away from her.
The sperm whale is a giant mammal that can be as long as 60 feet and can live up to 60 long years. It is also the largest predator with a tooth on the earth and is also the loudest mammal around. It can generate a call reaching 230 decibels.
Six-month Mission of Nautilus Team
The Nautilus team is on a six-month mission to conduct ongoing research on the effects the deep-water horizon oil spill in the 2010 caused to the oceanic ecosystem and also to conduct other sea-floor mapping projects.
The team had just started its first leg of the mission when they came across the sperm whale. The Nautilus team will be studying geology, biology, and archeology and exploring the ocean in all possible ways to understand the overall working of the ocean’s ecosystem.