Massive whale-shaped plane appears in the sky for first time in over a decade
This story was reported by The Associated Press and a team of international journalists.
Fifty miles off the coast of Oregon, the U.S. Air Force is using drones to monitor the migration of humpback whales in the region.
A massive triangular winged plane was spotted by pilots above the Columbia River on Monday. They call it the “Boeing 727” because it is made using parts from an aircraft known for its airworthiness.
The plane is being studied by researchers with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Weather Service in Portland, Oregon. The plane also has been captured in videos by witnesses.
It is the first time a large plane of this size has been seen in over a decade. And in a day when there is no clear sign that another major storm will hit, the observation is welcome news for whale watchers.
“It’s definitely a sign that the ocean is changing,” said Mike Taffe, manager of the Southwest Fisheries Science Center in San Pedro, California.
On Saturday, NOAA said humpbacks had been spotted south of San Francisco as far away as Honolulu and Point Reyes, California, but for the first time in more than 10 years, the agency said it was watching in real time.
Humpback whales have been seen for the first time migrating to the coast in more than a decade, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said in an alert Friday.
The humpbacks were seen on one of the NOAA’s four ships monitoring the Oregon coast, the U.S. Air Force said in a statement. Scientists say a massive plane made of debris from an aircraft known for its airworthiness, in this case the 727 called the “Boeing 727,” is flying above the ocean along the coast.
U.S. Air Force jets and U.S. Army pararescuemen are also participating in the study on the Oregon Coast, the agency said.
The new information comes from the aircraft’s position and position accuracy.
“From these data, the pilots can adjust their course to track