Practice English Speaking&Listening with: OCEAN STORIES | 'Meetings with Whales' | Read by Royston Raymond

Difficulty: 0

Hello explorers! Hello explorers!

Hello explorers! This little island of Alderney is blessed

in a way because by its very isolation

it's a haven for wildlife both on land and at sea

and here is another story

told to me by

Mr Raymond Gaudion about

some experiences at sea. It's called

'Meetings with Whales'. The richness of nature in our island's waters

is striking despite pollution.

There are large colonies of gannets puffins

petrels and seals on the stacks

and off-lying islets around our coast.

From time to time when at sea

I've come across whales. I can recall two occasions especially.

The first took place eight miles to the north of Alderney.

I was on my way to a fishing ground when suddenly

I found my boat in the middle of a pod of pilot whales.

I reckoned there were about forty to fifty of them.

The young ones in the middle protected by a ring of adults.

I cut the engine straight away fascinated by

this interesting phenomenon.

My boat became

an object of curiosity straight away for the young ones

who held themselves upright in the water

in order to inspect more closely these

strange creatures on two legs. Some of them

even rested their chins on the gunwale so as to better examine

my crewmen.

After about an hour one of the adult males

became anxious. The only explanation in my opinion

and he charged directly at the boat. This gave me some concern

but at the last moment

he dived under the boat and as he did so

gave a great whack with his tail

on the surface

soaking us all to the skin. Now

with whales

this is a sign of aggression so we took the hint

and very carefully I started the engine

and we went on our way peacefully. The second occasion was when

I was on was when I was

onboard a friend's boat

about half a mile to the north of Burhou.

This is a small islet to the north of Alderney. This was a pleasure trip.

It was a very old wooden boat

and I suspected a few of its planks to be half rotten

but the weather was fine

and I didn't think

we were in any danger. Suddenly

I noticed a large fin

two metres high very near us.

It was a Killer Whale Orca

There were three of them. They

approached the boat and began rubbing their backs against the

hull so as to displace

the barnacles and other parasites

that covered their skin. This rocked the boat

and my companions became frightened.

I reassured them killer whales don't eat

human beings they prefer

seals I wasn't completely sure of this.

But they had to be kept from panicking.

In case fear was conveyed to whales

to incite them to attack. Wild animals have an instinct for this.

After scratching themselves against the keel

for a few minutes the killer whales swam off peacefully.

Secretly I breathed a sigh of relief.

The Description of OCEAN STORIES | 'Meetings with Whales' | Read by Royston Raymond