A lucky group of whale-watchers in Mexico got more than they bargained for when a 50-foot grey whale lifted her calf to greet them in their boat.
The tourists had gone out in the Laguna San Ignacio, a part of the El Vizcaino Biosphere Reserve, which is the grey's whales' last undisturbed breeding ground.
Americans Greg and Barbara MacGillivray, who were whale-watching with One World, One Ocean, were the fortunate tourists to record the encounter, which saw the animal crest a wave and give her calf a push to see what was happening above the water.
Every year between January and April hundreds of grey whales - well known for their friendly nature - migrate 6,000 miles from Alaska to give birth in San Ignacio, on the Baja Peninsula.
Mrs MacGillivray, told the Daily Mail that the constant "oofft" of the exhalation from their blow holes was "probably the softest, most gentle and nurturing sound in the world", but added that tourists do not encroach on their space: "We would never approach the whales directly, but waited at a respectful distance of about 20-30 feet of a visible whale and calf to see if they would approach us.
Grey whales reach a length of about 16 metres (52 ft), a weight of 36 tonnes, and have a lifespan of between 50 and 70 years.
Watch the heart-warming video below:
Sign up to our weekly newsletter | Follow us on Twitter | Become a fan on Facebook