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Rare white Omura whale spotted again, this time near Phang Nga

Rare white Omura whale spotted again, this time near Phang Nga

A rare albino Omura whale that was spotted off the shore of Phuket has once again been seen in the Andaman off the coast of Phang Nga province.

Banchar Sae-jo, the manager of the New Tapana tourist boat, posted a video clip of the white Omura whale on his Facebook page on Saturday.

The rare albino whale was first spotted at 4pm on January 1 by tourists on the Happy Oars boat near Coral Island in Phuket province.

Marine experts said this was the first albino Omura whale to be spotted in the world.

Survey teams from the Marine and Coastal Resources Department as well as the National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation were deployed to search the Andaman Sea for the whale but failed to spot it again.

Rare white Omura whale spotted again, this time near Phang Nga

Banchar said the rare whale was seen near the Richelieu Rock, which is a famous diving site in Phang Nga, about 45 kilometres from the mainland.

The second sighting of the albino whale captured public attention on Monday when the post was shared by Kasetsart University lecturer Assoc Prof Dr Thon Thamrongnawasawat, who is also a marine expert.

Thon said this sighting was a miracle and has prompted a massive survey of Thailand’s waters. He said search teams had found several ordinary Omura whales, but not a single white one.

Rare white Omura whale spotted again, this time near Phang Nga

Thon said it was earlier thought that the albino whale had left Thai waters, but was spotted about 250 kilometres from the first sighting spot.

He believes it is the same whale as albino whales are extremely rare. He also noted that the first sighting had taken place on international New Year’s Day and the second on Chinese New Year.

The second sighting will allow officials to determine the habitat scope of Omura whales and device measures for protecting them.

nationthailand