Lobster Diver Nearly Eaten by Whale: 'I Was Completely Inside'

A lobster diver has recounted the terrifying experience of nearly being eaten alive by a humpback whale.

Michael Packard, 56, described being taken completely into the animal's mouth before being spat out around half a minute later.

Packard, of Provincetown, Massachusetts, explained the incident in a Facebook post.

Writing in the Provincetown Community Space Facebook group, he said: "I just want to clarify what happened to me today. I was lobster diving and A humpback whale tried to eat me.

"I was in his closed mouth for about 30 to 40 seconds before he rose to the surface and spit me out.

"I am very bruised up but have no broken bones.

"I want to thank the Provincetown rescue squad for there caring and help."

Packard expanded on the incident, which happened off Herring Cove on Friday, in an interview with WBZ-TV News. He said he thought at first he was being attacked by a shark when he "felt this huge bump and everything went dark."

Michael Packard was diving off Cape Cod Friday when "I just felt this truck hit me and everything just went dark." At first he thought it was a great white shark, then he realized he was in the mouth of a humpback whale. Full story here: https://t.co/GMPEQsI3vV pic.twitter.com/7bzswu92YF

— NBC10 Boston (@NBC10Boston) June 11, 2021

In a video for CBSN Boston, he said: "And then I felt around and I realized there was no teeth.

"And then I realized, 'Oh my God I'm in a whale's mouth and he's trying to swallow me.'

"And I thought myself, 'Okay, this is it.' I'm gonna die.

"I thought about my kids and my wife. Really, there was no getting out of there.

"Then all of a sudden he went up to the surface and started shaking his head, and I just got thrown in the air and landed in the water and I was free. And I was floating there, and I was just, I couldn't believe it. I couldn't believe I got out of that, and I'm here to tell it.

"I thought my legs were broken, but I'm all bruised up and I made it.

"It was happening so fast, my only thought was how to get out of that mouth. And I realized there was no overcoming a beast of that size, he was going to do what he was going to do. It was either he spit me out or he swallowed me."

Peter Corkeron of New England Aquarium told WBZ-TV Packard was lucky to be alive, but said the incident was a "very unusual accident."

He spoke of humpback whales "gulp feeding," where they take in large amounts of water, and said Packard was perhaps "unlucky enough to be in the wrong place at the wrong time."

Corkeron said he had never heard of any incident like this happening before.

Newsweek has attempted to contact Packard through Facebook for further comment.

stock photo of a humpback whale
This stock photo shows a humpback whale in clear water. Michael Packard has described his ordeal after being drawn into a whale's mouth. Craig Lambert/Getty Images