© New Zealand Broadcasting School 2019

Canterbury scientist captures once in a lifetime photo

Abbey Wakefield
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A minke whale just above the ice. Dr Regina Eisert

University of Canterbury scientist Dr Regina Eisert captures a minke whale on camera in the Antarctic.

The marine mammal expert from the University of Canterbury can't believe the rare underwater footage her team captured in the Antarctic.

"The whole whale glides past, this is such a lucky shot!" 

The whale in the images is the Antarctic minke whale, it can grow up to 10m long and weigh up to 9 tonnes.

Dr Eisert believes this is the first minke whale to be filmed underwater in the Ross sea.

"I'm such an excited scientist right now."

The team travelled to Scott Base with Antarctica New Zealand in January. Dr Eisert hopes analysis of the collected samples and images will provide a valuable data set for Ross Sea minke whale research.

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Footage of a minke whale underwater. Dr Regina Eisert
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A minke whale coming up to say hello. Dr Regina Eisert