Cape Cod Diver Swallowed Whole By A Humpback Whale

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Michael Packard said he was out diving for lobsters off Herring Cove Beach in Provincetown, Massachusetts, when he suddenly found himself inside a whale.

The leviathan spat him out and Mr Packard was left with nothing more than a suspected dislocated knee.

He thought he had been attacked by a shark, common in area waters, but then realised he could not feel any teeth and he wasn't in any pain.

"I think it was a surprise to all involved". 'And I thought to myself OK, this is it - I'm finally - I'm gonna die'.

The crew on Wednesday used a hook-shaped knife at the end of a 30-foot pole to cut the rope anchoring the whale to the sea floor, then tied buoys to the rope in its mouth, and the remaining entanglement was pulled free.

When he was chucked out of the mouth like a sunflower seed shell and landed in the water virtually unscathed save for bruised legs, Packard was simply dumbfounded. I'm done, I'm dead.

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He was rescued by his crewmate in the surface boat.

"I was in his closed mouth for about 30 to 40 seconds before he rose to the surface and spit me out. My second thought was for how injured I was", Packard said. "He sees them all the time out there", Packard said. "I couldn't believe I got out of that".

When a humpback feeds, he said, 'they do what we call gulp feeding, and they an open their mouths up incredibly widely, ' which Jooke Robbins, the director of Humpback Whales Studies at the Center for Coastal Studies, said could limit their forward vision.

"When they do that, they don't necessarily see everything", she said.

Charles Mayo, also a marine biologist at the Center for Coastal Studies, agreed.

"It's a little like sitting down to a really nice meal, and into your mouth flies a fly", he told CNN.

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His topside crewmate, who had been desperately scanning the water for telltale bubbles from Mr Packard's oxygen respirator, hauled him back into the boat. Mayo told CNN he was there when his son brought Packard ashore, and emergency services immobilised him and brought him to the hospital.

He added he began shaking the whale's head from the inside to try to get it to spit him up which it did.

"If you come up to atmospheric pressure, and you've held your breath, you could develop an embolism", Mayo said.

Packard's crewman Josiah Mayo is Stormy Mayo's son.

"He's a smart guy, he's a tough guy, and he's a lucky guy".

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