News Animals Scientists Just Found a Humpback Whale in the Amazon Rainforest By Ilana Strauss Yale University University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Ilana Strauss is a journalist who began writing for the Treehugger family in 2015. Her work has been featured in The Atlantic, The Cut, New York Magazine, and other publications. our editorial process Ilana Strauss Published February 26, 2019 Updated May 7, 2020 12:53PM EDT Filipe Frazao / Shutterstock Share Twitter Pinterest Email News Environment Business & Policy Science Animals Home & Design Current Events Treehugger Voices Scientists are still trying to work out this mystery. If you asked me, "What would you least expect to find in the Amazon rainforest?" I would not have answered "a humpback whale." The idea of a humpback whale in the jungle is so absurd, I would not even have thought of it. But yesterday, the absurd became a reality. Biologists discovered the 26-foot-long dead whale getting picked apart by vultures in the Brazilian Amazon. "It is not an adult animal, nor as large as it seems in the pictures," explained the Bicho D’água Institute, a Brazilian nonprofit. So now, the question that's been on your mind ever since you saw the headline: How did it get there? The scientists aren't sure. Some think a tide chucked the whale into the forest because, you know, what else? “We're still not sure how it landed here, but we're guessing that the creature was floating close to the shore and the tide, which has been pretty considerable over the past few days, picked it up and threw it inland, into the mangrove," explained Renata Emin, a marine scientist. Not that this theory explains everything. Humpback whales don't really swim around Brazil in February. “Along with this astonishing feat, we are baffled as to what a humpback whale is doing on the north coast of Brazil during February because this is a very unusual occurrence," Emin continued. Some experts guess the whale ate too much plastic and ... went to Brazil, I guess. Personally, I think Mother Nature is playing a joke on us. Whenever we think we've got everything figured out, she chucks a humpback whale at us.