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Hundreds paddle out for whales in Hervey Bay

Hervey Bay, Australia’s whale watching capital, has once again shown its love for whales with the third annual Paddle out for Whales taking place on Saturday.

Even a spot of bad weather couldn’t deter supporters from paddling out for Australia’s largest anti-whaling protest as part of IFAW’s National Whale Day.

Conservationist Bob Irwin and champion Ironwoman Hayley Bateup offically opened the day before taking part in the Paddle Out.

While the haunting strains of Hervey Bay’s humpbacks played out through loudspeakers on the beach, spectators were moved to tears as paddlers joined together to raise their oars and hold a one-minute silence.

In a moving tribute, 267 flowers were released into the water to represent the number of whales slaughtered last hunting season.

Ironwoman Hayley Bateup and conservationist Bob Irwin officially opened the event

Supporters gathered in front of Enzo's on the Beach to watch the Paddle Out

Harvey the Humpback cheered on paddlers - Photo Alistair Brightman for Fraser Coast Chronicle

There was a fantastic show of support at this year's Paddle Out for Whales

Man's Best Friend loves whales, too

Paddlers raise their oars for whales - Photo Alistair Brightman for Fraser Coast Chronicle

Want to have a close encounter with whales?

Harvey and the Humpbacks are heading back to Hervey Bay for the ‘Biggest Show on Earth’. Like any hallowed music theatre or legendary rock arena, Hervey Bay has all the right ingredients for an epic whale encounter, with thousands of humpbacks staying and playing between July and November. Early bird deals are available now at www.queensland.com/whales