Whale-watching continues to mystify and enchant people the world over. Something about the gentle serenity of the largest extant creatures on Earth fascinates humans. And some lesser-known aspects of these mammals’ behavior can be downright extraordinary, and even humbling. One harrowing moment in the South Pacific proved just how much the scientific community is yet to understand. When marine biologist and conservationist Nan Hauser encountered a male humpback whale off the Cook Islands, it did something so utterly unexpected and unprecedented that it defied anything she had ever witnessed, and shifted all previous knowledge about whale behavior, sending ripples through the scientific world.