A lobster diver was swallowed whole by a humpback whale. Thankfully, the 56-year-old man named Michael Packard lives to tell the tale after the mammal spat him back out. The incident took place in Cape Cod.
"I was diving for lobsters when a humpback whale tried to eat me. I was inside its closed mouth for 30 to 40 seconds, before it surfaced and spit at me. I have bruises all over but no broken bones. I thank the lifeguards at Provincetown for their care and assistance." said the man.
There is at least one reliable witness: his friend Josiah Mayo that was accompanying him on this fishing trip and he told the news that he saw his partner being ejected by the whale in the Atlantic Ocean and called lifeguards.
"I immediately thought it was the shark encounter that we had sadly been preparing for for years," he said in an interview Saturday to the new york times. Then he saw the flounder and the head of a whale. Moments later, he saw Mr. Packard fly out of the water.
"He tried to eat me," Packard spluttered, according to Mayo. The whale, a humpback, swam away while Mr. Mayo and another fisherman helped Mr. Packard get back into the boat.
What are the chances that this could happen to you?
When these whales look for food, they launch themselves with their mouths open, then swallow fish and water very quickly, and then they reject the water through their baleen, which act "like a filter".
Its mouth is big but its throat is quite narrow, there is no chance that it can swallow something as big as a man.
The humpback whale, which according to Mayo was still young, could not detect fast enough that there was an intruder in its mouth. Once she "swallowed" the man, she may have been rather surprised and opened her mouth to blow him away.
Although all the details are unknown, he assures that a conclusion is imposed: the Provincetown and Cap Cod region begins to notice the return of tourists after 15 months of pandemic and "it is important that people are aware" of the presence of these powerful marine mammals, which adults, depending on age, measure between nine and 15 meters.