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Sailboat struck by breaching whale -- is it real or is it Photoshop?

July 22, 2010 | 10:35 am

Outposts ran an item Wednesday about a sailboat that was struck by a breaching southern right whale and severely damaged.

The question has been circulating -- is the image real, or has it been Photoshopped?

Outposts reader "sailorchick" posted a comment Thursday morning, posing the question of why the man on the sailboat isn't even looking at the whale, saying that he looks downright relaxed. And, in her opinion, the shadows don't look right.

Below are purported before-and-after images of the incident:

before

after

I'm curious what others think, and if I get any updates one way or the other, I'll certainly keep readers posted.

-- Kelly Burgess
twitter.com/latimesoutposts

Upper photo: An image showing a southern right whale breaching near a sailboat off the coast of Cape Town, South Africa on Sunday. Credit: EPA

Lower photo: An image showing the damaged boat. Credit: EPA

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