We live in the age where the day is incomplete without reading news headlines like ‘video goes viral’, ‘takes the internet by storm’ and so on. Because all it takes is a piece of content, mishmashed context and a bunch of netizens who will like and retweet it in vast numbers. However, what are its chances of being authentic? NOT MUCH. One such video that has gone crazy viral is that of humpback whales swimming at Bombay High. It is widely shared in WhatsApp groups claiming how the lockdown has healed the nature to such an extent that a family of humpback whales are swimming at an offshore oilfield 176 km off the west coast of Mumbai. However, the truth behind this (old) video is far from reality. Keep scrolling as we do a thorough fact check to bust the fake news.
As the country is under lockdown to contain coronavirus outbreak, it has resulted in air, water and overall environmental improvement. With a much-needed break on human-made pollution, there’s a control over ecological damage. Right from the improvement in air and water quality to the betterment of flora and fauna situation, things look better for the environment. Peacocks, deer to dolphins, are spotted in Mumbai. Yes, animals are seen roaming freely as humans remain in lockdown. However, a viral video stating the humpback whales, a species of baleen whale swimming in full glory at Bombay High is not from the maximum city. Before we tell you the reality behind this trending video, here’s how netizens have been sharing on the micro-blogging platform, Twitter in large numbers.
A twitter user writes, "This is the video of Bombay High, oil extraction well located 161 kms from the coast of Mumbai. As the world gets cleaner & less polluted, we're blessed with sites we normally never see before. School of Humpback whales spotted![sic]" Another one tweets, “Pod of Humpback whales spotted off the coast of Mumbai. Apparently, the oil rig drilling activity has stopped resulting in these magnificent animals showing up. #blueplanet #IndiaFightsCorona”. Even celebrities could not contain their excitement on spotting these magnificent animals. Television personalities Salil Acharya and Nikhil Chinapa tweeted on it. While Salil wrote, “Bhaiyaaaaaaaaaaa i cnt even rub my eyes woww .. a little bit of #corona is required i think , it let the earth breathe and nature rest and rejuvenate, this near mumbai wowww #humpback whales .... im too excited and so is he lol #dinosaurs [sic],” Nikhil quips in saying, “These look like Humpback whales spotted from an oil rig at Bombay High, 176km from the coast of Mumbai. I think they’ve stopped drilling for oil so the whales are venturing closer. But Humpbacks! WOW! 💙💙 They grow to around 50 feet and males are known to sing! ❤️ @ShivAroor. [sic]”
Check Out The Tweets on Humpback Whales Swimming at Bombay High
Fact vs Fake
This is the video of Bombay High, oil extraction well located 161 kms from the coast of Mumbai. As the world gets cleaner & less polluted, we're blessed with sites we normally never see before. School of Humpback whales spotted! pic.twitter.com/hMW9DCb0Ot
— Achal Shah (@achalshah06) April 5, 2020
Excitement on Spotting Humpback Whales Spotting In Mumbai
— Sri Lanka Global (@srilankaglobal) April 4, 2020
Lockdown = 1, Fact = 0
Won't rule it out... Humpback whales r back near mumbai tooo.. Frankly one month quaratine will help nature to heal itself😅
— Rohit - ਰੋਹਿਤ (@stupiddentist) April 4, 2020
Actor Salil Acharya's Tweet on Humpback Whales
Bhaiyaaaaaaaaaaa i cnt even rub my eyes woww .. a little bit of #corona is required i think , it let the earth breathe and nature rest and rejuvenate, this near mumbai wowww #humpback whales .... im too excited and so is he lol #dinosaurs pic.twitter.com/mKdn6HSQ6I
— Salilacharya (@Salilacharya) April 5, 2020
Nikhil Chinapa Too Cannot Contain His Excitement
These look like Humpback whales spotted from an oil rig at Bombay High, 176km from the coast of Mumbai.
— Test, Test, TEST (@nikhilchinapa) April 4, 2020
Humpback Whales Spotting Brings Much Joy!
Bombay High is situated some 161 km north of Mumbai coast.
Few years back, Lot of shark whales and many dolphins were spotted in the vicinity of Bombay High.
— Dr.Snehal (@Dr_BitsnBytes) April 4, 2020
Not Everyone Seemed Convinced
It's not near mumbai. ONGC refuted these claims already. Possibly some other place. These are humpback whales and usually they dont visit these areas in this season.
— Major Amit Bansal (@majoramitbansal) April 4, 2020
YouTube Videos of Humpback Whales at Bombay High Went Viral
Real Story of Swimming Humpback Whales at 'Bombay High'
[Video] Sekelompok paus bungkuk terlihat melintasi laut Karimunjawa, padahal perairan Indonesia bukan termasuk jalur migrasi tahunan mereka. pic.twitter.com/k3ikjF8D2y
— BBC News Indonesia (@BBCIndonesia) August 29, 2019
While this video of humpback whales swimming in 'Bombai High (Mumbai)' is being shared without giving much thought into it (just like any video or fake news), here’s the real story behind it. It is an old video of humpback whales crossing Karimunjawa sea. Karimunjawa is a chain of 27 islands north of Semarang, off the coast of Central Java, Indonesia. We came across a tweet along with this video from BBC News Indonesia dated August 29, 2019, where they wrote, “A group of humpback whales are seen crossing the Karimunjawa sea, even though Indonesian waters are not part of their annual migration path.” So, that’s it.
A family of humpback whales swimming at Bombay High, an offshore oilfield 176 km off the west coast of Mumbai.
While the video of humpback whales is real, it is not from the Bombay High during lockdown. It is an old video of a group of humpback whales are seen crossing the Karimunjawa sea in Indonesia.