A juvenile Bryde's whale has been making the rounds on social media lately after showing up in Dapeng Bay off Shenzhen, Guangdong province.
The whale has lingered in the bay for more than a week since it was first seen on June 29, local officials said. It is about 7 to 8 meters long and was affectionately named Xiaobu by nearby residents. Streaming video of the whale by a local broadcaster has received around 300,000 views online.
Since the whale was spotted, an official work team has been working to protect it.
Under first-class state protection in China, the Bryde's whale likes to live in groups. The species has high requirements for food and water quality and is usually found in seas with abundant fish, said Liao Baolin, an expert at the Shenzhen Research Institute of Guangdong Ocean University.
According to the book Chinese Cetaceans, the last whale visit to the bay was near Sha Tau Kok, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, in 2005.
Xiaobu is the second recorded Bryde's whale in coastal waters off the Chinese mainland. The first was in 2018 near Weizhou Island in the North Sea of the Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region, experts said.