Beluga whales are gorgeous animals that have been designed by nature to thrive in cold waters, but they are often so elusive that human beings don’t get many opportunities to see them.
Despite the public’s demands for whale, killer whale and dolphin shows, they aren’t always easy on the performers themselves.
Recently, two beluga whales were given the opportunity of a lifetime after they were saved from performing, and given their first real taste of the sea since 2011!
These beautiful, friendly belugas were named Little Grey and Little White, and now they are finally enjoying their first chance at freedom after being rescued from China.
Even ABC News covered this story, and people can’t get enough of these darling whales!
After being rescued, they now reside at the Beluga Whale Sanctuary which is run by the British charity Sea Life Trust, in Iceland.
Leonie Sophia van den Hoek is a writer who’s also a scientific researcher and marine biologist, in an interview with Bored Panda, she said:
“In my opinion, beluga whales are like the unicorns of whales because of their unusual and beautiful white color.”
“They also lack a dorsal fin which makes them even more unusual among cetaceans.”
With microplastic use on the rise and being found in everything from fish in the ocean to sea salt typically found on store shelves (get a microplastic free brand of sea salt here), beluga whales are suffering.
A recent study found microplastics in the innards of all seven belugas tested.
Now, this lucky pair of beluga whales will have the chance to stay at a habitat specifically crafted for their needs.
They arrived safely at Klettsvik Bay, the world’s first open water sanctuary for belugas.
At first, they were held in a pool and tended to by researchers before being released into the open waters.
Previously, they were saved from performing in China.
“It’s been quite the journey for these two,” said Audrey Padgett, the Beluga Whale Sanctuary’s general manager.
“It hasn’t been easy, but it’s definitely been a labor of love.”
Each beluga weighs a little over a ton and can eat around 110 pounds of fish per day.
These are incredibly magical creatures that encompass everything Iceland has to offer in one magnificent animal, and it’s a pleasure to see them happy and thriving!
Check out the pictures and videos below, and be sure to visit this incredible country and sanctuary if you ever get the chance!
If you do, say hi to Little Grey and Little White for me!