Andrea Romano
June 29, 2017

The middle of the ocean is clearly the best place to make new friends.

Todd Mingramm, stand-up paddleboarder, managed to find a friendly whale who wanted to play with him on the open ocean last week near Ulladulla, Australia. Mingramm caught some of the encounter on video, and it’s clear that both he and his new bestie are literally having a whale of a time.

Mingramm told Nine News in Australia that he was teaching a paddleboarding class when the majestic sea creature swam up and started to flip its tail playfully and blow water out of its blowhole.

“It was super friendly and just wanted a pat,” Mingramm said.

The video shows Mingramm only five meters (about 16 feet) away from the whale. He says in the video, “just hanging out with whales, what's going on?” They’re totally casual buds now.

“I’ve seen dolphins, sharks and turtles, but this was definitely the most crazy one for sure,” he told Nine News.

Whales in this region typically head to warmer waters from mid-May to July in order to breed and give birth — so clearly, they’re all in a playful mood.

Mingramm said the rare encounter is one of the reasons why he loves paddleboarding.

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