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Amazing humpback whale calf breaching footage 2.7k

Discussion in 'Photos and Video' started by ltcopley, Feb 24, 2016.

  1. ltcopley

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    Hello all, I just joined the forums today. I've lurked for a while and I have learned a wealth of information through the site so thank you all for that. I'd like to share some footage I was able to capture last weekend with my P2 and GoPro 4 Silver. I'm still an amateur pilot and a first time GoPro studio user so please bear with me. I used a P2, H3-3D gimbal, GoPro Silver set at 2.7k with ND filter, Immersionrc 600mw transmitter, IOSD mini, and spironets to a black pearl monitor. I was able to get clear video at 1350 meters that day. I was able to look straight down at a very hyper humpback whale calf that was playing around off the coast of Maui. The clip got picked up for the show "Right this moment" today as well.

    I hope you enjoy it.

     
  2. jason

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    Hope you know those whales are protected and flying over them is against the law.
     
  3. ltcopley

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    So I looked into it after my first encounter. I called the local NOAA office and they told me that actively pursuing the whales was forbidden and they referred me to the following: Humpback whales are an endangered species, protected by the Endangered Species Act, the Marine Mammal Protection Act and Hawai`i State Law. It is illegal to approach a humpback whale closer than 100 yards by sea, and 1,000 feet by air. I then asked, just like when the local tour boat operators get up close and personal, what happens if I'm stationary and the whale approaches my field of view? They said as long as I was not chasing them and flying very low, it was fine but don't push my luck. In this case I was near the FAA ceiling plus the extra 100 meters or so of my takeoff point from the lookout above the water, I provided the footage to the local humpback whale research foundation and they were appreciative. I was actually filming coastline and some skin divers when the whale appeared under me and ended up just angling the camera down for it. There was some very minor maneuvering for better camera angle but I hightailed it out of there since battery was running low. I just happened to be in the right place at the right time. Thanks for your concern though.
     
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  4. jason

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    Good video by the way. Well at least you know the law not like some of the boneheads here who could care less.
     
  5. ltcopley

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    Thanks. Its my first.
     
  6. Stathis

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    Amazing....
     
  7. psanders83

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    Hey Itcopley

    WOOOOW that video is absolutely amazing ! I can honestly say it was like watching a program me on the Discovery channel. You were certainly in the right place at the right time ! I hope this doesnt sound patronizing as its not meant to be but you should be really proud to make such an amazing video !
     
    ltcopley likes this.
  8. Grae

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    I've watched a lot of footage and a lot is average. This is great. Love the clarity. Congratulations!


    UK
     
    ltcopley likes this.
  9. Grae

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    I've used a Go Pro Black but not on a drone. I've flown a Phantom 3 Pro, and used other cameras. Looking at your footage and taking into account post production stabilisation software such as the soon-to-be-launched Reel Steady which is ten times better than Warp Stabiliser, do you think Go Pro could gain an edge over the Phantom 3 Pro for video? Things just seem to pop more with the Go Pro. But then I don't know if I'm kidding myself - I mean, can you even use ND filters on a Go Pro? Just wondering...



    UK
     
  10. Qoncussion

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    Yep - plenty to choose from. See B&H, Amazon, eBay... etc.
     
  11. RamiAgonistes

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    That's awesome. Annoying that right after your post Big Brother has to notify you that it's "illegal". I swear this forum is a hotbed of FAA informant tattle tail rats.
     
  12. ltcopley

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    I used a Polar Pro ND8 filter on the GoPro (it slides on over the lens). I had to balance the gimbal to compensate for the extra weight (white stabilizers on a H3-3D gimbal). While filming, It was on 2.7k, 30fps, medium FOV, Auto WB. In post, I sped up the flyover scenes but keep the whale footage in realtime. I also enabled the "Flux" feature when rendering in GoPro studio. I believe the ND filter slowing down the frame rate and the "flux" feature really smoothed out the motion.
     
    Grae likes this.
  13. ltcopley

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    Thanks!
     
  14. terrylowe

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    Great shots. Wonder if the divers got to see any of this from their perspective?
     
  15. CaptainDrone798

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    Great vid! That's what the magic of a drone can capture when in the right hands. Add some better background music and you could have a popular vid.
     
  16. Helijoc

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    Nice shot! I'm sure the local biologist appreciate it. The 1000 feet mentioned is not a law but rather a NOAA recommendation, and that is out dated where drones are concerned. To avoid running a foul of the federal laws read the statutes where harassment is concerned. I saw no indication that mother and calf altered their behavior based on your presence. What do the local state laws have to say?
     
  17. Grae

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    I imagine a drone buzzing in the air is to a whale what a gnat would be to an earthworm amongst the grass.


    UK
     
  18. ltcopley

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    The local laws pretty much state the same thing, I have to be harassing the wildlife and influencing their behavior for it to be illegal. At the altitude I was at, I couldn't even hear the drone myself.
     
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  19. jordkl

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    these shots are awesome! I've filmed on kauai and big island but Maui looks like it has the most action. I also spoke to a couple lawyers who specialize in the MMPA. bottom line is to not harass them or do anything that would/could alter their behavior.
     
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  20. WetDog

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    Nice pics. Up here in Alaska they don't breach like that. Right now, Whale and seiners.jpg I'm trying to get some good views of bubble feeding. NOAA here is in a bit of quandry about UAVs. Regular aircraft are limited to 500' (not sure where the 1000 comes from). Boats encroach all of the time. Whales encroach on the boats all of the time. During the local herring fishery, the whales are just swimming right around the seiners - none of this 300 yard business.

    I've had them slam into my boat on a number of occasions and have to spend some quality time cleaning whale snot off of it (fun). They don't care much.

    I think the big thing is not to bother them, like jordki notes. A UAV 50 feet above a whale is going to be less noticeable than a seagull (squawking it's head off).
     
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