The sea creature can be seen causing quite a splash in the footage posted on YouTube earlier this week

A rare sighting of a humpback whale was made off the coast of Dartmouth earlier this week.

Halcyon Yachts director Pete Green and four crew had been delivering a motorboat from Chichester to Dartmouth when they spotted the mammal making quite a splash just off the estuary entrance.

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Speaking about the sighting Mr Green said: “We were just coming into Dartmouth and I saw some splashing and at first had no idea what I was looking at. I thought maybe it was a water-skier that had fallen off and then it was obvious that it was some kind of creature.

“I thought it could’ve been dolphins but it looked huge so I wondered if it was a load of dolphins and then it became obvious that it was a whale. It was leaping right out of the water and making a huge splash.

“It’s such a rare sighting. I’ve logged over 100,000 miles and I’ve been in and out of Dartmouth hundreds of times and I’ve never seen anything like it, it was amazing.”

As the group slowly approached the whale, it dived under water and surfaced again a few miles further out before disappearing out of sight.

Normally a rare sight to witness, a humpback whale was also spotted off the coast of Liverpool on 17 June.

Richard Harrington from the Marine Conservation Society said: “Humpback whales are quite rarely seen around the UK, and don’t tend to be seen in shallower water like this very often, so we don’t see them from clifftops and beaches usually.

“They are encountered quite frequently by boats further out to sea, and at this time of year they may possibly be on migration to feeding grounds for summer in the north.”