A blue whale spotted in the gulf of Eilat, May 29, 2018 – courtesy of Israel’s Nature and Parks Authority A blue whale spotted in the gulf of Eilat, May 29, 2018 – courtesy of Israel’s Nature and Parks Authority

Rare blue whale spotted in Egypt's Taba

Thu, May. 31, 2018
CAIRO - 31 May 2018: While working in a project in the Gulf of Israel’s Eilat, marine biologists were surprised by a blue whale, swimming reportedly only 300 meters from the shore on Tuesday, then it was seen in the Egyptian international waters, in Taba specifically. Apparently it is the first time for a blue whale to be spotted in the red sea.



In an interview with Egypt Today, Hisham Gabr, head of the Chamber of Diving and Water Sports said that the blue whale was spotted in Egypt’s city of Taba on Wednesday, but no one could capture photos for it. Taba is on the border near Eilat.

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Overview shot of the city of Taba – Wikimedia Commons/Mohammed Moussa


Gabr affirmed that the blue whale does not pose any danger to tourists and divers.

Egyptian Ministry of Environment said in a statement published on Thursday that it is monitoring the movement of the giant creature, adding that the blue whale might have lost his way while travelling to the north seeking cold water areas.

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A blue whale spotted in the gulf of Eilat, May 29, 2018 – courtesy of Israel’s Nature and Parks Authority


The ministry said its marine environment experts will study the reasons behind the presence of the blue whale in the red sea, and analyze the results of such phenomenon.

Environment Minister Khaled Fahmy ordered observation teams in the protectorates of the Red Sea and South Sinai to monitor the creature and capture photos for it.



A 20-meter blue whale of a species that is almost extinct appeared in the gulf of the red sea city of Eilat, far from its usual home in the southern hemisphere and Northern Atlantic, Israel’s Nature and Parks Authority said Tuesday.

The giant marine mammal appeared only 300 meters away from the shore, Ynet news reported. The welcomed guest was not spotted on Wednesday in Eilat, according to media reports, and is believed to have headed south to Egypt.

Blue whales are the largest creatures on the planet. A blue whale almost exists alone or with only one other partner, and may leave its habitat and travel for long distances for reasons including searching for food and reasons related to climate change.

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A blue whale spotted in the gulf of Eilat, May 29, 2018 – courtesy of Israel’s Nature and Parks Authority


Blue whales are vulnerable creatures that do not jeopardize human beings. However, Egyptian Ministry of Environment has urged citizens, in case they spot the creature somewhere, to stay apart and not to swim close to it.

The blue whale is not familiar with the red sea. Blue whales are up to 30 meters long and weigh up to over170 kilograms. They were hunted almost to extinction in the 20th century. In 1996, the blue whales were placed under protection.

Whaling has decreased the number of Antarctic blue whales, the largest blue whale subspecies, from 390,000 to a low of about 360 in 1973, according to a study by Trevor A. Branch, Koji Matsuoka, and Tomio Miyashita published in 2006.



According to National Geographic in 2016, scientists think the number of blue whales worldwide is between 10,000 and 20,000. However, the estimated numbers are uncertain.
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