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For many years, researchers have been examining the amazing marine creatures known as humpback whales. Nevertheless, not much is known about their sexual behaviour, and up until now, no evidence of humpback whale copulation has been found. Researchers witnessed the amazing event of two male humpback whales engaging in sexual activity off the coast of Maui, as reported in a recent study published in Marine Mammal Science.

Non-reproductive sexual behaviour, or sexual activity between two people of the same sex or between people who are too young to reproduce, is actually quite common in animals. Of course, we all know that humans engage in this behaviour frequently, but a variety of other animal species also exhibit it. Numerous marine species, including killer whales, walruses, and various dolphin species, have been observed engaging in same-sex sexual interactions. 

The fact that we know so little about humpback whale sexual behaviour is what makes the observation of these animals so significant. There are numerous reasons why two males may engage in sexual activity in many other species. The authors of the study claim that these include developing dominance, lowering social tension, and learning reproductive behaviours. In this instance, the brown colouring of one whale—referred to as Whale A in the study—drew the attention of the two whales, who then approached the boat. Whale A swam very slowly, malnourished, and in poor health due to a severe jaw injury. Whale B couldn't avoid him and followed him. 

It was evident from the photos of the encounter that Whale B's penis protruded during the whole chase, and he occasionally penetrated Whale A.

The whales' sex was determined by comparing images of their tail flukes to other photographic data that was entered into a database. The Pacific Whale Foundation had tagged both whales, and Whale A had previously had a biopsy to confirm his sex. The photos that were taken the day of the encounter clearly show Whale B's gender.

The researchers think that Whale A's deteriorating health could be a factor in the sexual behaviour they saw, even though the motivation behind it is still unclear. It's quite possible that Whale B was trying to establish dominance or strengthen a social bond with Whale A, and that Whale A is dying. Regardless of the outcome, the mere fact that the interaction was documented marks a significant advancement in our comprehension of this whale behaviour. 

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