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'Once-in-a-lifetime': Rare blue whale spotted off NSW Central Coast



A rare blue whale sighting in the waters off Terrigal has got locals excited.

The majestic mammal was spotted swimming 900m offshore, in what's believed to be the first time one's been spotted off the NSW Central Coast.

"This is a once-in-a-lifetime sort of thing," Ronny Ling from Marine Wildlife Rescue Central Coast told NBN News.

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"This is the holy grail, to see a blue whale in your own backyard is absolutely phenomenal."

Making it even more exciting for whale watchers is just how few such sightings have taken place over the last century.

"They're very rare and there's only been six sightings on the east coast of Australia in the last hundred years," Andrew "Skipper" Jones told NBN News.

Ahmet was on whale lookout duty with his friend Chris Dick when they spotted it on a drone.

"It's amazing – you see it on documentaries but you don't comprehend how big and graceful this creature is," Ahmet told NBN News.

It's believed the animal is a rare pygmy blue whale and is estimated to be around 25 metres in length.

However, the sighting has sparked some concerns among wildlife groups over the whale's weight.

"This animal itself did look rather thin, we could really see the spine on the animal as it went through," Ling said.

"So hopefully it's going to get something really nutritional to eat out there, have a lot of good feeds and get back on the good side of health."

Marine Wildlife Rescue Central Coast is using the sighting to issue a reminder.

They're warning boats to keep their distance from the animals across the migration season, as humpbacks and other species head north.

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