these pictures of spem whales were taken by dr. peter g. allinson off the coast of dominica, who says he spends four days to a week trying to photograph the animals. divers only use snorkels when swimming with the whales, so as not to disturb them with air bubbles from scuba tanks.
"when they interact with us they approach us very closely, rolling over again and again, trying to get us to rub their abdomens and bodies," allinson says. “when you start getting close to them you feel nervous, intimidated and then as they interact with you feel intense pleasure. you realise they are intelligent.”
sperm whales have the largest brain of any animal, and dive to depths of three kilometres, making them them the deepest diving mammal. the clicking sound they make is also the loudest sound made by any animal.
(the second photo of a pod of sleeping sperm whales was taken by magnus lundgren)